O Lord, I know all creatures, great and small — including deer, raccoons, and squirrels — that You in Your wisdom made them all. But OMG, would You mind sending them a memo that our garden is NOT the Golden Corral for Critters?
O Lord, some estimate You designed millions of different kinds of flowers growing on our planet. Whoa, how did You think up such diversity? Though I suppose that shouldn’t surprise me — because OMG, You’ve custom-designed every single one of billions of people.
OMG, please make me like my daffodil — determined to bloom and brighten, no matter what crazy winds blow!
O Lord, these tomatoes and peppers didn’t strut their stuff during the regular growing season, but on a brown paper bag beside my patio door, they finally ripen. OMG, I also take my time in maturing. Thank You for loving late bloomers!
OMG, Thank You for a harvest in which there is standing room only!
After writing a novel, I emerged from my cave, craving ice cream, conversation and sunlight. A Moose Tracks sundae equaled ice cream therapy. Hubby, waiting for a coherent word from me, took grunts as a portent of better things.
I drank in sunlight. Summer morning air. Green, living things.
Unfortunately, most were weeds. Thousands of Klingon sticker weeds had conquered garden and flower beds.
A flabby author’s perfect therapy: a down-and-dirty battle to rescue oppressed plants. To arms, garden warrior!
I donned grubby jeans, T-shirt, baseball cap and tennis shoes, all of which remembered the turn of the millennium.
Hubby: “No PJs? You’re wearing real clothes?”
For him, it was a long novel.
We bathed in sunscreen as if with war paint, then took up weapons: hoe, rake, hand spade — and cushy kneeling pad.
The sticker weeds jeered at my weak knees. Their lackeys — purslane, marestail, purple deadnettle and, of course, dandelions — joined in. (I researched weed names on a Purdue website. Battle Rule #1: know your enemies.) But I didn’t look up Klingon sticker weeds. I knew dangerous aliens when I saw them.
Weed phasers would have been nice additions to our weaponry cache. But Hubby struck vicious blows, hoeing squash and cucumbers. I attacked beleaguered tomato plants’ foes.
Tanned cyclists zoomed past. Hubby eyed them longingly, but continued valiant efforts. Ponytailed runners wearing designer attire and perfect makeup stared as if they hoped what I had wasn’t catching.
Whew! After a morning-long battle, we showered, wolfed sandwiches and Hubby went to work.
I peered out the back door, wanting to savor the view of our perfect garden again.
My jaw dropped.
An overloaded mulberry tree branch had dropped like a bomb, bending tomato plant cages. Smaller branches, leaves and mashed berries smothered veggie rows.
The mulberry tree was in cahoots with Klingon sticker weeds!
Such perfect timing. The moment Hubby left the driveway, the tree had unleashed its barrage.
I yanked at the big branch. It barely budged.
“You think you’ve won, Klingon-sticker-weed lover? Well, you’ve got another thing coming.”
A giant swoosh of anger can fuel a woman. Armed with hedge trimmers, saws and my husband’s old Boy Scout hatchet, I reduced my enemy to sawdust. Well, not exactly. But by afternoon’s end, I’d removed most of the mess.
Superwoman still couldn’t move the big branch. When Hubby returned, he sawed it into sections and hauled them out.
Once again, I savored the sight of tidy rows of vegetables.
Ah, the sunset. The fragrant summer evening. Green things that were legal.
A tired writer’s perfect therapy.
Exactly what she needed to send her back to her laptop forever!
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Does gardening relax you or wipe you out?
O Lord, Your critters regard our garden as their personal Golden Corral. They pilfer green beans and peppers. They make off with our tomatoes. Maybe, OMG, You might talk them into stealing some squash?
O Lord, no human beings look as enthusiastic about pulling weeds as we do about eating ice cream. Yet, OMG, thank You for our grandkids’ excellent help in shaping up garden and house!
I will never inflict such harm on my readers. I keep my lousy poetry to myself. I never coerce anyone into studying her belly button. As for my being a windbag — perish the thought!
Having dispelled these unfortunate associations, let us return to my profound end-of-summer reflections:
- Regardless of propaganda touting it as the ingredient for pizza, smoothies and cheesecakes, nobody likes kale.
- My husband’s “short” bike rides require a passport.
- Grandbabies’ discriminating palates prefer four summer food groups: sand, mud, gravel and sticks.
- My palate also dictates four summer food groups: butter pecan, salted caramel fudge, chocolate almond, and Moose Tracks.
- A related reflection: Skinny, beautiful people on TV drool over yogurt, but they never, ever will convince us it can replace ice cream.
- I sleep with only a sheet, but still need a quilt on my feet.
- If we water gardens to induce rain, the clouds know.
- Also, the probability of rain is in direct proportion to the amount we spent on Cubs tickets.
- If not for relatives’ summer visits, would the carpet get swept from June through September?
- Nobody really likes an ecologically diverse yard. Or wants me to preserve the prairie.
- Morning glories I plant always shrivel as if my trellis were radioactive. Yet a thousand healthy, nasty lovelies strangle my cucumbers.
- Deer who scavenge neighborhoods never eat crabgrass.
- Scratching sounds in an attic mean raccoons have started a summer obstetric ward there — or mosquitoes have grown bigger than I expected.
- While rainy days ruin human vacations, my fern, Carolyn, considers steamy conditions a five-star experience.
- If you live by a lake, visit kin who live by a different lake. Hurry, because it’s almost fall, and that’s the only way you’ll get a free vacation, too.
- I and other Stain Queens should be forbidden by law to wear white pants.
- People who grill only vegetables are not to be trusted.
- If a certain age, never shop the weekend before school starts. You will park in a different zip code. You also will return home with 143 15-cent notebooks.
- Ferris wheels at county fairs still fill me with six-year-old wow.
- After a lifetime of watching people voluntarily buying cotton candy, I still haven’t figured out why.
- Finally, when police know campers next to your site on a first-name basis, pitch a tent in your backyard instead.
Yes, summer will fade, but never fear. I soon will supply my readers with a whole new set of reflections — autumn reflections.
Not that I’m a windbag, or anything. …
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: What end-of-summer musings fill your mind?
OMG, did You grow these cucumbers just to give me a grin today? Did they make You laugh, too?