What does your weekend hold for you? My hope is that, along with the chores and the errands and the to-do lists there’ll be some downtime in your weekend, Gentle Reader.

Jeepers. I hope there’s downtime in my weekend, too.

Life is too short to ignore our need for rest. We’ve had a crazybusy few weeks at our place, and you undoubtedly have, too. I’m hoping to claim some downtime this weekend. How about you?

What’s going on at your place? Just in the past couple of weeks, here’s what we’ve been up to at our house . . .

Yikes, Timothy! Doesn't your mom already have enough gray hairs, already?

Yikes, Timothy! Doesn’t your mom already have enough gray hairs, already?

It started as a search-and-rescue mission of sorts. When our friends, the Kesslers in Beaver Crossing, dared climb out of their basement a few weeks ago and check out what the tornado had done to their place, they discovered that their big shed was gone, gone, gone. But not really. It wasn’t gone at all! The tornado had simply taken it apart and moved it into their pond. I told my friend Colleen that we could help them clean it all out of there (though, truth is, the turtles seemed to be enjoying having a place to sit and sun themselves). Our idea: we’d bring our boat and help them fish it out of the pond. Only . . . on checking out the situation, we realized that nothing short of a crane (a big crane) could remove those large, heavy, water-soaked shed pieces out of that pond. And we didn’t have a crane.

So what does our son (the one who climbs trees and has given me so many gray hairs) Timothy do? He kicks off his shoes (yes) and climbs into the water and starts tearing apart the pieces of the barn and throwing them up onto the bank, piece by piece. He said it was the only way . . . which makes sense . . . if it’s somebody else’s son walking about gingerly among the rusty nails and pieces of debris in the pond . . . *sigh*

Colleen and I were both on pins and needles the entire time he was in there, but I kept reminding myself that this son could probably handle this. He admitted that he was walking about very purposefully, carefully testing each footstep before putting his full weight down. Uh-huh, right, son. 😉 What-ever.

I don’t think I took a full breath until he climbed out of that pond and I looked down to see that his feet were okay.

And you can quote me on that.

An annual vacation in Hawaii, all expenses paid by the risk-oblivious son, would be even better than a medal. A massage. A weekend in a spa. Something.


Grab, pull, swing, POW!

Grab, pull, turn, swing, POW! You can see how frightened Tom is here, of my sledge-hammer-like swing.

Speaking of bravery . . . Amalia and my mom and I took a self-defense class for women, taught by little Mack’s Taekwondo teachers, Tom and Cathie Fosler. I loved taking the class. Although, as you might expect, the little town we live in is not exactly a hotbed of random acts of violence, now and then I do venture out of the safety of our little town, and I’ve always wished I had this sort of training. I’m a farm woman, accustomed to toting about big bags of grain, but it’s not like I’m going to throw a bag of grain at a would-be assailant. Maybe I could throw a chicken at him, but that wouldn’t be fair to the chicken, to be sure.

Anyway, it was a great class. I want to take another one. I really want to take a series of these classes, with lots of practice, so all the moves that Tom and Cathie taught us would be natural reactions. Of course, Bryan would have to watch his back if I honed my body into such a lethal weapon, with such fine-tuned defensive maneuvers. 😉

Bryan: (coming home from work, quietly walking up behind me, putting hand on my shoulder) “Hi honey, I’m ho—”

me: (instinctively) Grab, pull, turn, swing, POW!

Bryan: (astonished at my speed, agility, and power in putting him down on the floor) “Whaaaaa—?!”

me: “Oops. I thought you were a would-be assailant. Sorry.”

Bryan: (limping off to find an ice pack, holding jaw)

The men in my life would no longer sneak up on me, no sirree Bob.

I liked this move.

I liked this move.

Here Cathie has put her hubby down. On the ground. Just by pinching him there on the arm. Basically. So easy. So handy. And now, I know how to do this, too!

You know what they say about a little knowledge . . . what is it, again? That it’s a powerful thing? Something like that.

In the garden . . . I’ve harvested all the radishes for now, although I’ve got new ones coming up, between the corn rows. I decided to just put in a few rows wherever I have the space. They are in and out of the garden so quickly, in 3 to 4 weeks, that there’s plenty of time for them to come to maturity while the slower-growing crops, such as corn or melons or peppers, mature. Aren’t these pretty? Pink Beauty Radish, from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.

pink radishes . . . yes!

pink radishes . . . yes!

I’m also going to experiment with growing lettuces all summer long, just by planting new seed in flats (not in the garden) every few weeks. My favorites right now:

Tom Thumb lettuce, from Baker Creek

“Tom Thumb” lettuce, from Baker Creek


I don’t remember the name of this red lettuce, snuggled with another Tom Thumb.

My flowers in the hoophouse are just beginning to bloom . . .

"Pink Senorita," Baker Creek Seeds

“Pink Senorita,” Baker Creek Seeds



“Rocky Top Lettuce Mix,” from Baker Creek: almost too pretty to eat!


Our daughter Bethie and her boyfriend Saia made a wonderful birthday present for me, all on the sly, one day while I was napping. They have some real skills between them, wouldn’t you agree? I just love this log planter that they made for me, and they also planted it full of flowers (“wowers” my granddaughter Anya would say, and I concur).


I really like the way it looks in front of this wooden tomato cage that my brother Matt made for me. As you can see, I don’t use it for tomatoes. I use something not nearly so pretty, but easier to make.


I planted two flowering vines on this wooden stand several years ago: a type of clematis on the left, and a pink honeysuckle on the right. I can’t stop looking at this, I think it’s so pretty. (Maybe I’ll go out and look at it again.)

My tomato plants had a couple of hiccups early on. . . first they got nipped by a surprise frost (after our frost-free date!) and then the neighbor farmer spraying 2 4,d got a little wild on a windy day, and I thought I was going to lose them all, but they’ve come out of their little chemical-induced shlump, and I’m breathing easier. I only lost a dozen or so. There’s no way I’d ever have been able to replace all those varieties of plants that I’ve been caring for lo, so many months, if I’d lost them all.

Farmers really do need to be more careful with that stuff. Harumph. (More about that later.)

I’m still working on getting all the tomato cages up. Every day, I put up a few. I pull the weeds, I water, I mulch, and I pinch those tomato leaves. Oh, and I pick a tomato here and there. My friend Gene gave me a few large tomato plants when I visited him, three new heirloom varieties that I didn’t have. And I’ve picked a few of those tomatoes and let me tell you . . . those first few heirloom tomatoes of the season are the tastiest tomatoes you’ll ever eat!

Here’s the way it works around here, among tomato gardeners, and gardeners in general . . . I went to visit my friend Gene, and mentioned woefully (this was when I thought I was going to lose most of my tomato plants) the sad state of my little tomato plants. Instantly he pushed me to pick out a few of his extras, to help make up for that loss. Just a week or two later, my friend Bob lost all of his tomato plants to a bad hailstorm. He stopped to visit me, mentioning this fact (also woeful) and--mercy!–I still had a few dozen plants in pots, so I pushed him to pick out as many as he wanted, and sent them home with him. Once you’ve raised really excellent tomatoes, you don’t want anybody to go without them.

As a matter of fact. . . I still have tomato plants–they are in little pots, in my hoophouse–and I’m continuing to water them, but I don’t have the room for them. I hate to throw them into the compost bin. If anybody reading this lives in the area and wants some of them, leave me a comment! They are yours!

"Hog's Heart"

“Hog’s Heart”


Our Amalia has been on a mission trip with a church group to South Dakota for the week, so little Mack and I flew solo all week, at least during the daytime. I made an attempt to tie some strings with my little man, and we deliberately planned something special to do together every day. We worked hard in the mornings, and then we’d take off and do something fun for a couple hours in the afternoons. We went for bike rides, ate ice cream, loaded up on library books, went out to lunch, went swimming at the town pool, and took Princess Anee to the park. It was wonderful.

I’m sold! I’m sold on deliberately having fun this summer!

I plan to keep up this”deliberate fun” culture. I promise (to myself, and to you!) not to get too caught up in the tasks of the day, that I forget how fleeting is childhood, and how quickly kids grow up. *sigh* And how important it is to have fun. Sometimes I forget.

our Princess Anee and her Uncle Mack

our Princess Anee and her Uncle Mack

Anee wanted to make sculptures in the sand, so Uncle Mack dug up cool, wet sand for us to use. We stayed quite happily employed at this for a good long time. It has been a while since I’ve made sand creatures. And Anee was delighted, no matter what my sand sculptures looked like. I think we probably could have stayed there until dark, all three of us.


If you were wondering, that’s the snow monster on the left, and Olaf on the right. Anya saw it right away, and she approved. She’s making the snow castle. 

Continuing in her current and popular princess theme, Anya wanted me to sculpt all the main characters from the movie “Frozen” in sand. The princesses were the hardest part. 😉

With Father’s Day this weekend, I thank God–from Whom all blessings flow!–for all the excellent fathers in my life: my two sons Matthew and Andrew are now wonderful daddys, and my husband Bryan is amazing at daddying, and my own dad, too. I’m so thankful that my own dad has been such a fine example of fatherhood to Bryan, and to my sons. What a example he is! He would do anything–anything–for any of us, and we all know it, too. There’s a great deal of comfort in that fact, even now that we’re all grown up and still smart-aleks and probably not always exactly lovable. (wince) What a blessing he is to all of us.

Familiar sight in the spring: Dad rototilling our gardens.

Familiar sight in the spring: Dad rototilling our gardens.

That's my sister Mollie and me, embarrassing Dad in the coffee shop.

That’s my sister Mollie and me, embarrassing Dad in the coffee shop on his birthday.

Well. It’s time for the weekend to start, so I’ll log off for now and get to mine, and I’ll let you get to yours! Have a good one, and thanks always for returning to this space time and again.

I appreciate you, I really do!

I’m sharing this post with the great folks over at The Prairie Homestead. Come on over!


12 thoughts on “Weekending

  1. Gene

    Another sweet post! As you can see, I actually have time now to read them on the day you post them. Well, maybe not every day, but most. Don’t know if you’ve ever butchered your own hog, but those Hog’s Heart tomatoes live up to their name. Same shape, same color, just smaller. You and Amalia need to come down again and take photos of the head lettuces in my “new” shade house. They are absolutely perfect! No mud, no insect damage. I’ll take some pics after while and email them to you. But you are still welcome to visit anytime; I finally got the whole place mowed for the first time this past week, and it actually looks nice for a change.

    1. dramamamafive Post author

      Thank you for the invitation! Amalia and I will come to see your new lettuces! I’m waiting for our blueberries to ripen so I can bring you a handful. 🙂

  2. Mari

    This weekend?! Well, here it is – Sunday! It is God’s day – a day of rest – besides being Father’s Day for my husband – the father of my daughters. Besides all that, it is our anniversary. How many years married? Probably more than most of you have in birthdays so far. We have been married since before automobiles were invented! My daughters asked when they were young – Were you married before they had horses? What?! Well, probably. I guess I need to work on the wrinkles and all. Before horses? Really?
    To all fathers everywhere…happy Father’s Day to each and every one of you. Today is your chance to be a wonderful, terrific, attentive father. Go to it!

  3. Ana

    What a beautiful weekend you described there. My weekends tend to be too much indoors doing and not enough being outside relaxing. And I absolutely love the idea of having neighbors who live at Beaver Crossing instead of just the next number in our street as ours do.

  4. Alana(@RamblinGarden)

    So fortunate to have my loving husband, who has been a loving father to our one son. And, in turn, my father, who has been gone almost 30 years now, raised me lovingly after my Mom died when I was 12. I’ve been blessed to have loving father/husband in my life. And now, my son is outside helping with yard work, and the sun has come out. What more could I want for?

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