Garden Gnomes

The weather seemed to be conspiring with my kids to keep me from planting my garden today. When I left for work this morning it was a beautiful sunny day, warm & threatening to get hot. I was more than a little startled when my cell phone rang, it was the landscaper & he promised to be here at the beginning of next week to get the grass cut before the birthday party. I was worried about driving out of signal range & so didn’t ask what he would charge to come back on a widely spaced basis (I don’t want the grass cut every week, I like it to get a little shaggy between cuttings to help to keep it green) he also told me we needed to be really sure that everything was picked up in the grass so they don’t damage their equipment, so I called miss 17 as soon as I got to work & told her that they needed to go through the grass & find everything in it. Work was horrible, the longest 5 hours ever! When I called home on break at 11:30 17 said not only had they cleared all the stuff in the yard her bf had taken the trash to the dumpsters (the first thing on my agenda after work today) That was a good thing but she told me not to expect any help planting the garden this evening.


When I got in the car to go home after my 5 hour stint. It was beautiful, hot & sunny. Just over the county line though, the clouds began to get grayer & grayer, when I got to the top of the biggest hill on rte 8 on my way home, lightning was jumping around on the mountains to the west which is the direction I head in. As soon as I turned off the main road the rain started to sprinkle by the time I was at the halfway point on the side road I was unable to see even with the wipers on high. The road I was on is a lot straighter than the short way but it is very hilly, you go up one hill & straight down the next over & over again, sometimes with only a little space between the end of one hill & the beginning of the next. This results in some little crevices in the road which fill with water. Also, in the name of my least favorite thing, progress, there are a few places on this road where the trees have been cleared in preparation for more houses to be built. The road was covered with dirt & gravel next to these cut places because without the trees to hold the dirt it just washes down into the road. Aside from the air in my car being blue with my swearing about greedy developers destroying all the trees & raping the land. Nothing bad happened, at one point lightning came down right in the trees on the side of the road beside me & the thunder crashed at the same time! A tree fell over in the woods near the edge of the road. Very close! I arrived home in one piece & the car didn’t get scratched or dinged.

Here at home the rain was falling heavily enough to preclude doing any gardening so I checked email & when it cleared a little we went to town to get some more cucmber & tomato plants, milk, bread, the usual neccessities on my no paycheck week. At home we decided to just have a pick up dinner & get to the gardening asap. it went well, we planted a whole row & a half of tomatoes, about the same in cucumbers, a row of summer squash & zuchinni, a mixed row of peppers & cabbage, both red & green. My back gave out before I could plant the watermelon & the one set of 4 musk melons (cantaloupe) 17 insisted I had to buy.


The rain had turned the paths between my raised rows to mud & we came in the house completely brown with clay & mud. 17 departed earlier than the rest of us to take her shower first (busy with the bf, I’m just glad I got an hour or so work out of her) After I told her the story of the little red hen which she claimed to have never heard before. 10 tells me it’s told about the hen making cake, not bread nowadays.  The gist was that if she doesn’t help she doesn’t get cucumbers & tomatoes, two of her favorite things, over the summer.

After listening to 10 & 7 fight about who was going to take the next shower, for 15 minutes & trying to resolve it by having them guess a number between 1 & 20 (which resulted in a fist fight between them) I solved it by taking my shower first, I took a bath though & read in the tub, I was a little apprehensive because I was beginning a new book “The Widow of the South” byRobert Hicks. The book sucked me in & before I knew it it had been an hour & most of my water (brown from all the mud on my legs) Had drained out of the tub.


We’re still arguing the amount of clothing we can each take on vacation. Miss 10 being the true hold out on the 7 outfits limit I have imposed on other trips. Since 17’s bf is coming along on the trip we have less room in the car all around & a 5 outfit limit has to be enforced

The clothes are truly the least of my worries on this trip though, my cousin’s apartment building has a guest suite which we stayed in for a few nights last year & were planning on staying in for 4 nights during this trip but as it turns out it’s already booked by someone else for the full second week of the vacation.  This has put all plans & itineraries into a tailspin & I have no idea where we’re going first or next or anything, only a list of places the kids really want to go like the beach, on a trip to Boston for a day & Ann’s house.


My Mother told my cousin while they were decorating graves together on Memorial day that I’d take any 4 days before the other people get there. we arrive the 12 & leave the 24th & they have it rented from the 16 to the 22 so it would have to be before they get there. He hasn’t called or emailed her or I since then though so we’re just up in the air about everything except that we’re definitley leaving Monday night.

I also wrote to an old friend, she & I have been friends since we were 3 but have always had huge breaks in our friendship, we stopped talking when we were 14 & then picked up again at 20 when my brother died, we talked for approximately 7 years & then she stopped returning my calls around the time my youngest was born, I sent cards for birthdays & Christmas for a few more years but as she never responded I stopped sending. This year I had extra Christmas cards & sent her one, she sent one back so I wrote her a letter about 2 weeks ago & mailed it with my email, phone & address in it along with a brief summary of what I’ve been doing for the last 7 or so years (meaning I let her know I was divorced- she didn’t care for the ex much at all) & asking to get together while I’m in MA. She hasn’t written, emailed or called yet. I guess I’m not holding my breath really.

Some days, when I’m writing lists of what day we ‘should’ do what while on vacation, (not to stick to, just to help me remember what we really want to do while we’re there)  I think we’re going to be bored for at least a few days. I’ve got to make sure Mr 7 packs some things to do – not like last year when he thought he was going to watch TV & then when we got to my mother’s house he found she didn’t have cable! The kids are pushing for a repeat of last year, when, on a rainy day, I took them to the movies to see Pirates of the Caribbean 2. I don’t know if the budget can handle that again!


6 thoughts on “Garden Gnomes

  1. It sounds like your vacation is going to add almost as much stress as it’s supposed to relieve, Becky. I hope everything works out without any snags. It’s been a few years since I’ve done anything other than visit my parents while on vacation–it’d be nice to do a little traveling.

    Michele sent me over to inspect your garden. Looks very muddy! I’d like to see some rain here, Becky. It’s been a dry 3 plus weeks now.

  2. I need to call you and find out exactly when you want to come. I think i can get a day or two off from work so we could make it a weekend plus a couple of days. We have got to have better weather than we had last year!!

  3. Here from Michele…it is 88 in North Idaho and we dug in the dirt today as well….planted a little of this and that. Vacation….seems to be a word I remember.

  4. I think this must be the season for unpredictable weather everywhere! I sat on my porch yesterday in brilliant sunshine as thunder and lightning and heavy rain began to hit our neighborhood.

    Ten minutes later, the storm was over and everything went back to normal. Weird.

  5. Visiting via Michele :o) I’d love some of that rain if you can manage it. We’re sitting at +30 for the next few days and we are not used to it here in Alberta….Canada.

  6. wow, that sounds like quite the storm! I bought stuff for my garden this weekend, but didn’t get to plant it yet, and it’s pouring like a mofo now!

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