pink peony

pink peony
old-fashioned peony

Thursday, March 28, 2013


It's my job as a Mimi -- to introduce my city-raised grandgirls to scrounging around old homeplaces for special finds.
Can you see the fern growing inside that old jar? A nature-made terrarium, it is.
Yesterday, on the first day of their spring-break visit to the farm, we started the day's adventures with a visit to this old house -- she shelters glorious treasures in the weeds and brambles and tangled vines that grow in what was once a yard. We came away with a basketful of discarded trash that we will turn into something special -- stay tuned for updates!
No, we didn't go in the old cellar but we peeked -- nothing roared or growled at us. Whew!
Poking around builds appetites in girls, so we had lunch on the banks of Brixey Creek.
We implored the sun to shine for us -- it was quite chilly near the cold water.
Our next task was to gather ye daffodils while ye may...
These old places have such stories to tell. This one told us, "I'm Molly's cabin. Molly and her little dog, Maxine, lived here a long time ago. Molly's parents built the cabin, but they caught the dreaded smallpox and both died, leaving Molly a lonely young woman with only Maxine for companionship. But one day something wonderful happened! George came over the hill, followed by his faithful coondog, Jack (I had a mule/dog, his name was Jack -- I rode his tail to save his back). George and Jack lived two hollers away, and they were lonely, too. So that morning, way before daylight, they'd climbed to the highest overlook and had scanned the horizon for signs of humans and dogs. And sure enough, George and Jack had spied the smoke curling upward from Molly's chimney. So they made a beeline for her place and introduced themselves. After Maxine decided Jack was an okay dog, Molly decided George was an okay fella. And they went on to live happily ever after, eventually raising 15 young 'uns on George's farm two hollers over. Yes, Molly moved away from her snug cabin when she married George. But every spring, she hiked over the hills to pick herself a bouquet of her mother's daffodils -- it was Molly's way of remembering. The End."
Did you know old abandoned cabins had so much to say?
Next stop -- the trail to Blue Spring.
It's a magical place....
...with a cave to peek into...
...and so many things to discover.
This is the view from the bluff above, looking down on the bubbling spring.
These city girls really love the country places I love.
What a joy to have them for a few days, to share in the things and the places I love.
They're great little troopers.
Mimi, what would you do if this tree fell in the river?
Mimi, can we please come back in summer and jump in the spring??
Time to head home -- Mimi, what can we do tomorrow????


Friday, March 22, 2013

Snow in Spring


When we woke up this morning, a winter wonderland had arrived, paying no attention to the fact that Spring has already sprung.
After a while of looking out at all the beautiy, I decided to actively participate by taking a ramble.
Our house looks pretty with a white hat, don't you think?
As I made my way through the heavy accumulation, it was slow going. I heard these guys talking about me, long before I saw them. They were saying, "Is she really headed to the lake? No way! That's our lake!"
Yes, I was headed to the lake, to see who might be bravely swimming on this chilly morn.
Only three hardy ducks, who showed disdain at my approach -- they swam the other way.
The cattle, who also consider the lake and its surrounding field their domain, joined the ducks in expressing their displeasure at my intrusion. They turned tail and sought privacy elsewhere.
But even though I got a less-than-friendly welcome from those creatures, I still was rewarded for my efforts. The lake was so pretty this morning.
The cedar trees wear their winter garb well.
So do the hardwoods.
I trekked on up to the barn...
and said hello to Big Guy and Little Guy, who were a little warmer in their greeting than the others. Perhaps it was the fact that they were confined to the corral and couldn't escape that made me think they were friendlier.
Now it is time for vegetable soup and cornbread.
What's for lunch at your house?

Saturday, March 16, 2013


Wyatt and Addie love to Do Things when they come to visit. Today we talked a lot about St. Patrick's Day. I told them about green and pinching and so there was a little practice pinching in anticipation of the coming events. (Be sure and wear a bit o' green to church Sunday or be ready for pinches!) And then we made a cake to celebrate.

Great-great-grandma Taber used to make jello poke cakes, and we decided this would be a good way to add some green.
Mostly, we had to Do Things outside.
Can you see the face in Old Man Rock?
No outdoor adventures are complete without snacks.
Wyatt likes to use my camera.
Hiking made us warm, so he wanted to take off his shirt. He said, "Mimi, I'm not so skinny anymore. See my four-pack?"
Addie is now big enough to go on our long hikes and not get tired. She's a little trooper.
Just not quite as brave as her big brother who MUST climb to the top of everything.
We following this singing spring branch a long way up the holler, noting the GREEN watercress...
and the GREEN moss on the rocks.
After our hike, we had a little history lesson, poking around Great-grandma's old schoolhouse.
She went eight grades there and later taught a few terms in this old relic.
"Mimi, they still have the whiteboard!"  .... an opportunity for another lesson in how schools have changed.
No, I did not let him go in there, but it wasn't for lack of trying.
Another generation of children's laughter added to this echoes in this place...
Another bright spot of green at an old homeplace....
We counted the crossings -- six times we criss-crossed Spring Creek on low-water bridges on our way back to the house. But we couldn't begin to count the diamonds on the water of the old creek...
So many sparkles added to the story of my life today -- hopefully, to theirs, too.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

              The siren song of almost-spring...

...lured us into the woods... search of color...

...the signature color of spring.

There aren't many yet... we only took a few...
...and then we poked around just a little more... was a taste, a delicious taste, of good things to come.