Although I am far too lazy to be a farmer I am a farmer in my dreams. The last two days have been so enjoyable. The days were sunny and bright and in the upper 40's and low 50's. Although the leaves are starting to bud on the lilac bushes, the other shrubs are leafless. Perfect for pruning and shaping. How much they grow each year.
And, the lawn. Every little nook and cranny was filled with leaves. The leaves were all cleaned last fall but some found their way to my yard over the winter. Thank goodness for leaf blowers.
So far I've filled two huge yard bags full of leaves and trimmings. I'll fill a third bag from my little front yard and at least three from my even smaller back yard.
Today and tomorrow is supposed to get into the 60's. Wow! I've got at least another day of prunning in the front yard. Although it is supposed to rain for the next two days unless rain is actually falling I can trim.
I'm trying something new this year, rubber mulch. Even at Sam's the initial cost is expensive but I use a lot of mulch.
If it lasts two or three years it will be worth the cost. Although my front and back yards are small they are scuplted with gently curving frames of mulch. With a sprinkling of color from annuals I humbly proclaim my yard to be the best in the neighborhood.
Last year I pleased Julie, and myself as well, by planting a corner with decorative cabbage, some in multi-color and some in purple. I sure got my money's worth from those little jewels. They provided color right on through the winter.
I have an obligation to have a beautiful yard. When I asked Julie to marry me I made her two promises. I told her I didn't know how our relationship would work out but she could be assured that her children would love me and she'd have the nicest yard in the neighborhood. Of the two promises, the yard was by far the easiest to achieve. Julie is proud of her yard.
I'm ahead of schedule with the yard. I want to get it in shape before I move to the lake for the summer. We've found a young man who will work for a bit of money so that I won't have to come home each week to care for the yard.
We've planned a great year with group dinners each month of the year starting in April. We plan to have a large group at the lake twice and couples there on an on going basis. On the 4th of July I hope we can get the entire family together for a hoedown cum barbeque. Put this on your schedule, Nancy Roop! We've had a luau several times over the years and have accumulated a lot of decorations. We plan to do another in September for both friends and family. We had about 65 at our last luau two years ago but will probably try to lower that number a bit to reduce the stress somewhat. We shucked 12 dozen ears of corn at the last luau, well, my friend Bill Ludwig shucked 12 dozen ears. HA
November and December promises to be outstanding. Julie and I are going back to Prospect Hill Plantation Inn for Thanksgiving. We have been to this beautiful, old plantation near Charlottsville, Virginia a number of times and once before for Thanksgiving.
We like staying in the "Boy's Cabin", a 1600 era hewn log cabin with a large, hand made brick fireplace. We've reserved it for three nights.
Adding to our plantation experience this year will be a visit with a newly discovered cousin and her family. Cheryl and Jack Buckley, who live nearby the Inn, will join us for dinner at the Inn on Wednesday and they plan to host us at a local restuarant on Friday night. Although she is a newly found cousin she has become an important part of our lives as we share joys and prayers.
Kimberly has acquired eight tickets to this year's Army-Navy game in Phildelphia the second week in December. The kids treated me to that game for my 70th birthday. This is an event that is unforgettable, far more than just another football game. It will be a new experience for Julie who has never been to Philadelphia. Go Navy!
Between a bum back requiring therapy, when I could not help Julie decorate for the season, and preparations for what turned out to be an aborted attempt at a cross country bike ride, we did not entertain as we normally do at Christmas. I promised Julie we'd make this Christmas season the best ever. I look forward to it.
Until then, I look forward to peace and tranquility at the lakeside retreat. I have a brand new garden tiller and plan to put in a big garden and can the produce. In prior years I've had trouble with people stealing from my garden so I plan to stay at the lake this year.
I haven't fished much for the last few years but plan to do so this year. Knox Lake supposedly has the most bass per size of lake for any lake in Ohio. I catch a few bass on ultra-light gear but what the lake has is lots of channel catfish. It may not have as many lunker flatheads as in the Ohio River but it sure has a lot of three and four pound channel cats. I like to fish at night, too.
Yes, spring is the start of what I think will be a great year. The good Lord willing and the creek don't rise too much, that is.
Thank the good Lord!