Monday, May 31, 2010


As I sit on the deck on this Memorial Day it is appropriate that I see an American Bald Eagle soaring overhead. Our symbol of freedom. I love living in this country, and love the freedom I have as an American citizen. There are times I take it for granted that I can do, say and act anyway I want because of the democracy that our country is based on.

We all know this freedom came with a price. The price of the blood of the military men and women who have taken up arms to win, gain and protect our freedom. Today is the day to reflect on the sacrifices these soldiers have made for us and the generations before us.

My ancestors have taken up arms since the Revolutionary War, and have continued to be willing to protect this country. We have lost loved ones, and have embraced the ones who come home to us. Whatever the war, we have supported our soldiers and have shone pride in who they are.

Pause for a moment and think about the rights and privileges you have, and how we have managed to keep them.



Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Threat of Knitting

I think everyone should commute on a bus, at least for a couple of weeks, so you can get an idea of how people react to different situations. It is interesting, and the majority of commuters are a delightful group. There are, of course, the idiots and jerks who think they own the bus/train/carpool, but fortunately that is a small minority.

There are the men (yes, men), who seem to think they need to be on the bus before anyone, including short, small women on crutches. The other day I literally stood in front of one of these men so a short, small woman on crutches could get on first.

There are so the men (again) who think they need a whole seat to work on their computers so others end up standing. If you request they move their computers/briefcase/gym bag, they act insulted, like we should all recognize how important this person is and let them have room for their importance.

There is the woman who has to talk at the top of her lungs on her cell phone about how awlful or wonderful her date was the night before, with details included.

There is the woman who thinks you are there to hear her life story.

There is the guy who has a Blackberry that keeps beeping a new call/message/email until the nice lady across the aisle takes it from him to turn it to quiet or vibrate.

The one person (man or woman) that I find the most interesting, however, is the "fear of knitting" person. I really shouldn't say "one" as this seems to affect a lot of people. I have discovered over the years that people don't want to sit next to knitters. I know it's not me because someone will sit next to me if I'm not knitting. Bring out the knitting, however, and they will pass by the empty seat each time, until IT IS THE LAST AVAILABLE SEAT ON THE BUS. I'm knitting a sock, on small needles, sitting like a little bird with my arms next to by body. I'm not flapping around my arms or the knitting. My purse is on my lap where the yarn is so the yarn isn't all over the place. I'm quiet, and keep my knitting to myself, and the colors of the yarn are beautiful. When someone does finally take the LAST AVAILABLE SEAT ON THE BUS, they sit leaning toward the aisle like they think they are going to get stabbed by the needles or caught up in the yarn. It's especially interesting to see someone recoil against the side of the bus if I get on after them and bring out the knitting. If I were a spiteful person, I could really have fun playing mind games with my knitting.

Knitters out there, have you noticed the same thing? Maybe there should be a knitting section on the bus or train where we knitters could share seats, admire each other's work, and you know, have a fun commute to and from work.



Sunday, May 9, 2010

My Mom and This Blog

This morning I was walking around looking at my garden, cup of coffee in hand, thinking about how beautiful the day was, when it hit me. It was my mom that introduced me to gardening when I was a very, very young girl. I remember sitting next to her while she weeded, collecting worms in a Band Aid tin. As I was walking around I was also thinking I needed to update my blog when it dawned on me, if it hadn't been for Mom teaching me to knit 50 years ago, there wouldn't be this blog. As I remember Mom on this Mother's Day, I also remember how the small things she taught me as a child, have become major aspects of my life now as an adult, and a mother myself. I do think of Mom each time I post an entry because most of the entries somehow involve knitting, and gardening. Mom was always interested in what I was knitting and what we had growing in our gardens.

This year we planted asparagus, which would have thrilled Mom. She loved asparagus, but I didn't because she overcooked them. Well, now that I have discovered asparagus doesn't have to be cooked to the gross point, I also love them. When I got the bee in my bonnet to plant asparagus, I didn't realize what a project it was going to me. I am going to share the whole experience with you so if you decide to plant asparagus, you'll be better prepared.

Last fall I read up on planting asparagus and decided on ordering asparagus crowns. I prepared a bed with good soil and compost last year, fertilized and was all set to go this spring. The bed was 14' by 18" and 12" deep.

I ordered a little blooklet this Spring entitled "Grow the Best Asparagus." Good thing I read it before we planted the crowns. The original bed ... TOO SMALL.
We had to quickly plan on a MUCH LARGER bed. We laid out a 6' x 30' bed. Asparagus are a perennial and have a huge root structure. The roots will grow 6' deep and spread out 5', and the asparagus ferns grow 5-7 feet tall. Well, at least the ferns will block the view of the neighbor's yard.

This bed had to be started from scratch. David rented a rototiller and tilled. Susan and I spaded, and spaded some more. We dug the "trench" to place the crowns in. After storing these dear crowns on a cookie sheet in my fridge for three weeks, we planted.

In a trench about 12" deep, and 18" wide, you make little hills to place the crowns on.

Strange looking I know, each on looks like an octopus.

After the crowns are on the little hills we covered them with the first layer of soil. As the plants grow over the summer we will add soil until the trench is level with the ground around it.

If you look carefully, you can see the little crown head sticking up next to the hose (on left near the hook on the hose).

The soaker hose is in place. We will need to do a deep soaking at least once a week this summer. Of course, we added a Johnny fence to keep the dogs out of the bed.

In the meantime, I finished my St. Patrick's socks last Thursday, which kicked in this beautiful weather. Which brings me back to this morning ...

beautiful. Thanks Mom for letting me dig in the garden with you.

Happy Mother's Day.