Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Little River watershed

View from my spring which flows in a nameless creek into the Little River, the banks of "my" creek are thick with wild flowers and young trees, no cattle erode the banks; but above my land the creek begins where cattle have eroded the banks. Although we have had such drought in the past several years that no water flows in this area to my land, when we do get heavy rains or (as we did this spring) big snow melt, the creek above me turns muddy quickly. I went to the open house presented by DEQ last night at Sinkland Farm and was struck by how few people attended; i should say SADDENED. Years ago I was the only river land owner who spoke for the State Scenic River designation for the river - I was hoping tonight to see more land owners turning out for this who might feel as i do and interested in pushing for scenic river status again. Alas, I don't think we are near that point. In the section of the Little River which begins in Floyd, the river suffers from heat and loss of insect life which makes the river inhabitable for fish. The is an unacceptable situation in my estimate. WE should have folks up in arms. We need to put unemployed folks to work fencing out cattle. I know I am not alone in fretting over the increase in nitrogen fed green slimmy growth in the river (last years was worse - this year not really bad). I have lived in my farm house which is set back almost 1/2 a mile from my land on the river for 37 years and I have seen the changes in the water quality and in the decrease in fish population. Residents in this watershed need to be aware that what they do to their lawns matters, farmers need to respect that without good water their cattle suffer, we all need to work to bring this watershed to a better quality. ARGH.

Monday, September 27, 2010

stoop to smell the roses

We stoop to smell, we stop to check out, we hesitate at bugs, we idle crossing creek, we store acorns and hickory nuts! And now the grass that was crinkly brown is green after 2 inches of rain. River is high, creek flows strong, minnows swim out of the shallow catches.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Pigeon Return

I'd not expected pigeon back, I had swept half of the porch clean and even dumped the few seeds left on the chair seat, but returning from the river around six yesterday with Diane, Susan and Katy, I saw a now familiar shape hunched asleep on the back of the wicker chair on my back porch! of course, I am elated; pigeon is just pigeon - no friendlier than before. The river was wildly delicious yesterday, water like a cool liquid velvet (Diane suggested silk, which sounds right , except I am allergic to silk). Susan and I sat on hot rock to warm while Diane swam her camera across the river to meet Katy for pictures. We may not have the alacrity of our youthful selves on the rocks, but we are able enough to be here with the wildness and recognize it for our blood, our food, our soul.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

wild in us

Of my three cats, Katrina, is the wildest, found at a neighbor's house with kitten almost as big as she was. She is a good hunter, putting to shame my two old men lazy felines. She demands fresh running water and head tickles.
At the river today, Diane, Susan and Katy and I were extolling the benefits of wildness. Susan pointing out that globally we seem to be at a cross roads when civilization might move away from honoring and maintaining "wildness." (if it already hasn't, i fret) So we were thinking of starting a blog jointly with glorious wildness as a theme. Perhaps after closing the chickens (against too much wildness), I'll attempt to start a new blog!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

ginger snaps and fall

Something in the air has made me long for ginger snaps and in preparation I left out enough butter to soften during the afternoon. This is my Joy of Cooking recipe halved with powdered sugar and lemon glaze.
Pigeon flew off yesterday as I went on the porch to hang my bathing suit (YES, swimming again and head first dive in!). But pigeon was back as I went to bed.
We have another mystery besides from where did the pigeon come; pears on the drive. For awhile I had the notion that deer somehow dropped them there! As Baldwin pointed out, only raccoons could hold one and even they would have trouble going far with a pear in hand. So where is the pear tree; not within sight of the spot under the pines along the road. I walked up thru the pines this morning, but found no tree with pears.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

the last of....

The last of the edamame, the almost last of tomatoes, but my arugula which was so attacked by bugs in spring that i had but tiny lace leaves, is now restaurant perfect (well, almost). As I rolled up the wire around the corn which we had electrified to keep the raccoons out, I looked up at the clear blue sky wanting to wish for rain but seeing not even a wisp of cloud, i did not.
Maybe another swim day; yesterday was wonderful - and old me even went in quickly! My Tartaro sculpture is free standing again thanks to Mary and Pam drilling the bird claws to the cross. All is well in the hollar again, carrier pigeon and all.

Monday, September 13, 2010

watching frogs

These cool mornings (48 today) have us inside until the sun warms up the deck or swings on the front porch - this might be 10 AM. I've closed all the windows in the house and only open doors in the warm afternoons - lucky to live without bugs you wouldn't care to invite inside. Digging potatoes and watering the sweet peppers hoping they still have time to produce before the first heavy frost - doesn't take much of a frost to kill peppers. I think I have all the ingredients to make Alma fantastic pickled hot peppers; if so, I'll harvest my jalapenos. Considering all the eaten out husks of potatoes I unearthed yesterday evening, I'm slightly worried about my sweet potatoes. I still have lovely swiss chard and some beans and arugula that is not being eaten this late crop. I may even have some broccoli if Jack Frost stays away.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


Cold and thank the gods rainy day, helping to host Heritage Day at the cabin - talking with Laura and then with Mary Ann. Finally home in time to watch the Federer-Djokovic tennis match. Ezra off to Amsterdam and Aberdeen, Scotland with work - then Italy with Jen.
So cool inside with all windows closed, i've kept a neck scarf on after coming in from chicken house run. Looked at doggies up for adoption at the humane society kennels - didn't find one that urged me towards a visit, tho several Beagles. I think I want a dog with hair, less than 30 lbs, and female - could be as old as 7 and barks at deer! (thinking I should bring Mojo and Irie with me to shop dog)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

shopping with girl

as you can see we really really needed to get some clothes for DD; it's cool in the mornings and she has out grown all of her shirts - let alone the need for pants! The difficulty with shopping for DD is that everything looks good (not that we actually try anything on); so as Baba says, you have to go for the "ironic." DD also goes big for pink! Ironic would be her new glow in the dark skeleton pjs with a girly skirt; or maybe polka dot dress with striped leggins. IT is much fun and I wish I had gotten a picture of her going for the afternoon goat walk to the river in her new three tiered frufru pink skirt with orange short dress! And today was orientation at her preschool at RU - another reason for the shopping trip!

shelly beans and Hyoscyamus

For some reason, i've only grown tiny cabbages! The early heat this summer and the bugs wagged a war on broccoli and cabbage; yet, the blue lake stringless green beans have been bountiful. I
planted the corn too close,meager ears, tho delicious. . (having trouble with this post - why the
underline? - glad it is gone). Interesting homeopathic consult yesterday: recognizing the amazing remedy Hyoscyamus pattern, jealousy after the birth of a sibling, loss of inhibitions (shameless behavior), acting out (very extroverted) at home and at school. Can also be triggered by head injury. Have seen this remedy work quickly to restore a child to a balanced state - parents greatly relieved!
Clouds this morning and I am hoping for rain!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day

It is a magnificent day, a day for the porch and later the river and later the grill - lucky me DD and her people are joining me for dinner. Happiness definitely can bloom in such perfect weather. And if the weather is not compliant, the face of a two year old is an excellent delight.

mornings in September light

when my initial melancholy diminishes at the cooler September mornings, at the purple top and golden rod blooming, I delight in the autumn is totally different this time of year here in the hollar, almost gentle, shimmering off the leaves. It surprises me to admit that after probing the sentiment (my sadness in autumn), I realize that at an early age, I didn't want to return to New Orleans from my grandmother's house. It wasn't the city, it was my home.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

thinking of Rudy

I don't think my dad likes me; I'm just not his type of woman. He introduces me as on the political far left; he being a FOX news devotee - needless to say we don't talk politics much. He tells me I would look really good if I'd go to the beauty parlor. He is no more proud of me stopping smoking 15 years ago after my mother's death from lung cancer, than he was pleased when I stopped having a drink with him ("you think you're better than us?"). Now when I visit I do have a glass of wine with him at the " Rudy's lounge" (he insists we call it a lounge, not a bar!) he built on the golf course near his house. And i listen for the umpteenth time to war stories or sailing stories. I try to be the dutiful daughter, but I can't do lunch too in a day - I skip out to my good friend's house in Ocean Springs. This is a picture of what was left of my parent's house on the gulf in Ocean Springs after Katrina - my father had sold the house and this horse was a movie prop the new owners had. My friend's house was two houses away. Her house was moved from its foundation and had several feet of water in it - she and her husband had just sold it, but were still living there.
I do think alcohol plays some part in the relationship between me and my dad; guess I'm not his idea of a "fun" girl...and he sure doesn't like any woman in his peer group. I do love him for being brave and in love enough with my mother to marry her and her 6 year old twins. He told me after my sister's death that he never could tell us apart.

Saturday, September 4, 2010


My favorite tennis player, James Blake just lost his 3rd round match to Djokovic; he was a wild card in this US OPEN, but went further than Roddick - but not doing as well as his friend, Fish. Hope Fish can beat Djokovic! Blustery lovely day, so good to see my neighbors on Big Branch (please do send me your blogspot name, Emily! - and Anner hope you will begin blogging).
I love marigolds and every fall I wish i had planted more of them - of course, every fall I wish I'd planted more flowers in general and in particular, I wish I had planted 2 or3 more encore roses in the front of the house. But then it is a question of how many more plants I should tempt the deer with! This thought always couples with the question of whether to get a dog or not. Then I attempt to talk myself into visiting the HS shelter; which gets tangled into apprehension of not being able to leave without a dog...which begins a debate on just what type do I want, ending in indecision. ah!

Best news of the day: a grand baby in the near future!!!

Friday, September 3, 2010


With help from the gardening two year old, I shelled some beans! Beans now in my freezer and discarded cases in the chicken yard - the weather has been absolutely fabulous. I've been swimming these warm afternoons in the cool clear river in spite of thoughts that it was too cool and my last swim of the year had been in August. Must say that Miss water wings was most encouraging to Nannee - tho i didn't leap in as she manages! Trying to mend from the disappointment in my Hughes Net satellite connection - which is fast enuf but which has a governor on 24 hr use of downloads; basically I was hoping to catch some of the US Open tennis via internet - but it uses beaucoup download time. Grrrrr....they get you hooked and then they persuade you to up your service. it is all mega bucks to Hughes Net. But oh, I'm over it; ha!