Thursday, July 21, 2011

The 5 and DIME - The Basement @ TAF

First let me explain that "TAF" stands for Tag Along Farm which is what Kenny and Carl named their farm in Clifton Forge.

In June we had another farm summit where we all worked our fingers and backs to the bone. We accomplished unbelieveable amounts of work even during those very oppressively hot, humid days. This is the time when the phrase "Many hands make light work" is truly seen in full force and by the end of each day my sisters, our husbands and children all came in totally exhausted and filthy dirty but completely satisfied and fulfilled by the accomplishments of all.

During one of the shifts while 2 of my sisters were doing work detail at the farm they tackled the basement in the house. Now I am here to tell you NO ONE likes to go down there, it is a spooky, moldy, loathsome hole in the ground so this was quite
nervy of those girls to go by themselves. They stayed hard at the job for the entire day wondering if it was too big for them but sister Chipley persevered all the while dragging Mitzy back down to help her.

They did the most amazing job and when I arrived and had to go to the basement to put salt in the softener I was shocked at what they had accomplished. I was also grateful because now it is much less scarey for me to go down there. Now don't get me wrong, I still don't treasure the thoughts of spending much time there but I can go now without as much trepidation.

After all the work was completed and Chipley returned back home to CO she sent me this poem she had written in a matter of minutes as she was thinking back on her visit to the farm. I thought it was so cleaver and funny, I wanted to share it with you. (FYI - Syd is my nickname.)

The Basement @ TAF

Yes, 'tis truth, shant be denied
She is the bravest, never horrified.

Spiders, centipedes, and mold she braves,
Be bold, be strong, is what she craves.

Into the dank, dark, dungeony place,
She bravely walks with a courageous face.

Leaving there quaking in her shadow above,
Her three sissy sisters who she truly loves.

And because they are sissy, and never dare,
To step in that place that raises their hair.

She shows how she orders all bugs, "Get the hid!"
While the three sissy sisters yell, "GO GET 'EM SYD!"

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The 5 and DIME - Whoopie

Here is a picture of the newest kid on the block or perhaps I should say farm. Whoopie! You have met her once or twice already. If you remember she was the one helping Kenny to do outdoor sweeping. Well meet her again as she asks for someone inside the house to come and let her in to join them. No words are spoken, only a look in the window to see who is in there to open the door. What a funny little character.

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The 5 and DIME - Meet the FAM

Yesterday lots of the family (Fam) got together to celebrate a birthday and the birth of a new Fam member. We also had the wonderful opportunity to meet new and old friends, eat loads of yummy food and catch up on the comings and goings of our loved ones. It was a perfectly beautiful day and we could not have asked for anything better except perhaps that a few more of our loved ones could have been with us to join in on the celebration.

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Saturday, July 16, 2011

The 5 and DIME - Once an adult, twice a child

Yesterday Kenny and I went to the store to purchase a birthday gift for her 2 year old great granddaughter, Charis Gilbert. We are heading to Harrisonburg this morning not only to celebrate this special birthday but also to meet another great grandchild of Kenny's. Her name is Hannah Gilbert, the newest addition to the Gilbert family.

Gift shopping is such fun and we were ready for the opportunity to get off the farm. A colorful, whimsical outfit seemed appropriate for the newborn but the 2 year old gift created a tougher search. After considerable deliberation we chose a "Funlight". This is a plastic puppy and by squeezing his tail, his mouth opens and the flashlight comes on. Am I making myself clear???

Once we returned home and began wrapping the gifts Kenny was enthralled with the puppy yet again. It suddenly became evident that the both of them were buddies. Well we did finally finish the task at hand and then placed our packages into the car for the trip.

At bedtime last night as I was heading upstairs Kenny was sitting on the top step with a sparkle in her eye and a smile on her face as big as Texas. She was holding her puppy that was placed under her pillow to be discovered at bedtime. She regaled me about the sweetness of this lil fella before we could head to bed and tears came to my eyes as I listened and looked at that lil girl so thrilled with this plastic puppy. So today Kenny wants to take her pup to the birthday party to meet Charis's birthday puppy.

Life is full of changes; some good, some bad but ultimately they are only what we chose to make of them. Today will be a terrific day when the poochies become great friends and then realize they are related. Child, adult, mother, grandmother, great grandmother, child.

Friday, July 15, 2011

OUR BIG GAREN - organic or agent orange???

I have nearly given up the cause for organic grown veggies. I have a myriad of reasons why I am making such a statment but let me leave it to say at the moment I am dealing only with squash bugs.

My sisters and I have managed to grow a beautiful garden while on our TOD (Tour of Duty) where we each live independently, for 10 days caring for our mother. We have been feasting on lettuces, kale, peas,cukes, swiss chard, beets and green beans but rarely have we savored the taste of summer squash. This is entirely due to something called a squash bug.

We have managed to grow some of the most gorgeous, picturesque squash plants to be found in Alleghany County I believe however these pests are ruining our once thriving plants. Our constitution of "au Naturel" is failing FAST!!!

We women profess and promote organic, natural childbirth. We love our mushroom friends and agree that a shower and hair washing once a week is extravagant to say the least. We raise and eat free range chicken eggs, use only whole grains in our breads; no white, unbleached flour to be found in our homes and we love falafel, humus and only an occasional McDonald's hamburger. But I am here to tell you I am a proponent of agent orange (whatever that is - but I think it is "real" poison).

Our "natural" friends profess "Organscide" and even Dawn detergent to prevent the pests from total ruination of the garden. They even say a board or newspaper laid down to catch the hungry varmites will work but that was a negative.

Please look at the pixs below to see how successful (?) we were with our organic cures.

In the golden ages this was called fornication and from that many children (squash babies) were born. Of course in our family twins are prevalent so it could be construed as squash babies. (See pix to far right)

Tuesday, July 12, 2011