Monday, June 29, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Yesterday we went to a birthday party. Friends and neighbors gathered to celebrate Nina Bee’s first year of life. Small talk was inevitable as not all attendants were intimately acquainted. As I refilled my wine I became privy to one of these space-filling conversations; an enticing discussion about clover. Enjoying my fly-on-the-wall status I feigned activity and listened in.
“Well,” said one person, “ the clover in this neighborhood is really the fault of so and so up the street. She’s all organic. Not that there is anything wrong with that. But her grass is full of clover and now it’s migrated to our yard.”
“Oh that’s terrible” said another, “no one wants a yard full of clover.” They went on to discuss the various merits of herbicides used to eradicate this evil invader from their lawns.
I quietly slipped away. You see our yard is blanketed in clover. Initially we were going to eliminate it as removal seemed the neighborly thing to do. But then we read the ingredient list on the herbicide bottle. We quickly decided we’d rather have clover than odd growths on our children or an eight-eyed school of fish downstream. And so we went against the first suburban commandment and simply let the clover be.
And here’s my dirty little secret ... I like the clover.
It’s green. It doesn’t die off when the dogs pee on it. Were it not for clover our lawn would be entirely yellow/brown (I’m not joking). Instead our lawn is peppered with little white flowers that attracts bees. These bees, though they come with stingers, are good for environment. Shoes are a good idea when playing on our “grass”. It’s a fair trade; shoes for environmental friendliness.
When the kids are bored I can send them out to search for four leaf clovers. I’m willing to bet families with “perfect” lawns can’t get their kids to go out and pick through the grass as a form of entertainment. Besides these kids would probably contract some sort of mutagentic disease if they were to do so.
And there you have it. Perhaps I’m lazy. Perhaps I’m a hippie. Perhaps I’m the dredge of the neighborhood. Or, perhaps, I’m all three. What I do know is I like fish with two eyes, children without growths and my blanket of clover.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Monday, June 8, 2009
Friday, June 5, 2009
Today I found myself in pajamas at noon. This is not uncommon around these parts. With shift work it's easy to justify late day lounging (even when I didn't work the night before). But there is one problem; both my cotton and flannel PJs have holes in the buttocks. I do not relish the idea of the mail man being directly exposed to the least attractive part of my body. As such new PJs were in order tout suite.
Oh and my new favorite music for lazing about? Orba Squara. A couple of their songs have been used in commercials (Iams Dog Food and Ipod). I love their music - it's so bright and cheerful. Here's a sampling:
Happy Frugal Friday!
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
The park was flooded with people; pedestrians and bicyclists alike. Flowers spilled out of backpacks and purses as if they’d sprouted amongst the wallets and checkbooks. Women, men and children carried wicker baskets full of vegetables, fresh bread, organic eggs and cured meats. Today was the first day of the Farmer’s Market.
I didn’t have much time. Mine was a quick jaunt between the library and work. But it was well worth the effort. My first stop was the nut vendor. Who can resist sweet and spicy almonds still warm in the bag? The spice hits first; a quick blaze followed by a sweet carmel crunch.
And then the counterpoint -- delectable sugar snap peas. As a general rule my children will not touch, much less put in their mouths, anything green. If a foodstuff remotely resembles a vegetable it is not to be eaten. Sugar snap peas, however, are the exception. They will be devoured with abandon straight out of the container.
I also could not resist a pint of deep red strawberries. I would have bought more were I not going to work. These perfectly ripe strawberries were ever so slightly soft and juicy and needed no embellishment. Tomorrow they’d have gone too far and be best in smoothies or muffins. But today ... just right.
Finally I bought a bushel of sweet pea flowers. The folks in front of me wondered if sweet peas were too humble a gift for their yuppie friends. ‘Tis true, sweat peas are a modest flower atop twisted vines. They beg for a simple vase - in my opinion nothing but a mason jar will do. But put a bushel of sweat peas in a mason jar and you have a glorious offering- fit for kings, yuppies or even us simple folk.
As I left the clouds were rolling in. A jovial older woman stopped to chat.
“Oh I hope we have thunder storms tonight.”
“Don’t worry,” I replied with conviction, “we most definitely will.”
I drove home to find a hula hoop laying in the front yard. Somehow it fit perfectly with the bucolic market. Then I meandered around back to share my snap pea tops with the chickens. They were blissfully clucking away unruffled by the distant thunder.
As much as I didn’t want to I readied for work. During the drive lightening cracked over the mountains - nature's fireworks. The rain began gushing down just as I pulled up. Our clinic doors leak so we piled towels high in the hallway and stared in awe at the onslaught. Secretly I wished the roof would leak too because there is something terribly romantic about the drip drip drip of rain into a tin can.
Alas, no roof leaks (be careful what you wish for, eh?). Work finally beckoned and I was forced to return to the “real world”. But you can bet your bottom dollar I’m going back to the Farmer’s Market next chance I get.
Monday, June 1, 2009
Here's our coop tucked in the yard. It still needs a few details but is mostly done. The chicken girls seemed quite happy to move out of the garage.