Last weekend Chris and I went hiking, with Shrek, in the Sangre Mountains to Horn Lakes. It was a beautiful hiking day and nice to have a day mostly off, once a few basic farm chores were taken care of. At this stream crossing there was the most perfectly planted by nature fairy garden on a log. No one could have planted a nicer garden than this one, compliments of mother nature.
Once we reached the alpine lake we had a picnic lunch and enjoyed just being for a while. Across the lake was a family of coyotes yipping when we arrived. We were careful not to make them feel threatened by our presence, especially since we had a dog with us. After a few minutes they quieted down. We could see them moving about on the other side of the lake, which was quite a nice treat for us to see them in their home place.
I’m harvesting a good amount of peppers and tomatoes now from my garden. I roasted the peppers in the oven and then put them in the dehydrator with tomatoes seasoned with garlic. By layering the trays every other one peppers and tomatoes, the flavors of both infused each other as they were drying. Today, I took them out of the dehydrator and put them into storage jars for use this winter. They taste delicious!
This week Lizz began the very big process of potting up fresh stock plants. Each year we replace the previous year’s stock plants with new ones, excepting rosemaries and a few other long-lived plants. We used to keep our stock plants for multiple years, but we’ve found that we get a higher yield of propagation materials if we have younger fresher mother plants. Before we discard the old stock plants we take one last batch of cuttings or root divisions from them and then they are gifted to the compost trailer to go back to the earth and nourish the soil with good organic matter.
Some years back I told the story on this blog about my experience with the women I used to work with who were from Mexico, and their thoughts about seeing a toad. If you put toads are a good omen into the search space on this blog it will take you back to that first telling of the story, but I’ll give you a short version here.
We have a small toad that showed up in the greenhouse recently as a tiny baby toad. It’s grown quite a bit, as there are always things a toad would like to eat in abundance in the greenhouse like flies or slugs or whatever. So, this toad is growing fast into a healthy creature. Lizz says he/she is a fat little toad and it’s true.
The ladies I used to work with would tell me whenever we saw a toad in the greenhouses at Paulinos that toads are good omens. Whatever positive thought you have in your mind at the moment you set eyes on a toad, means you will have something positive happen in your life. Whenever I see a toad somewhere, in the greenhouses or in the gardens, I always think about what I was thinking of that was good at the moment I saw the toad. Then I feel like it is a good omen of things to come in my life. I like having toads around. They are good for pest control and they are fun to watch. This little creature hops about as we move around in the greenhouse. It seems to enjoy watching us as much as we like catching a glimpse of it.
It’s the end of August and a full moon tonight. I’ve been out working in the flower field today and also spending time watering the gardens. It’s still a busy time of the year, but the pace is a gentle one as long as you keep focused and don’t slack off on getting tasks accomplished. I appreciate that very much. The mornings are cool, and even though the days are still very hot, they cool down earlier each day so that the evenings are quite pleasant. I caught my first sign of autumn this morning in the cottonwood leaves which are getting spots of golden color. It’s not fall yet, but you can feel a little bit of a shift in the seasons beginning.
I saw a family of evening grosbeak birds at our platform feeder this morning while I was visiting with my parents. I really enjoy watching the wild birds, and when baby birds are involved it’s even more fun to see them learning about food foraging and how to fly, etc. What a gift for me to watch them.
Nature will give you so many amazing gifts if you are present to the process. You will gain valuable lessons too on life and how to best live it. Sometimes the lessons are difficult, other times they are glorious, always they are useful.
As September arrives, and the seasons start to change in earnest, I hope this time of the year will bring you much abundance of mind, body and spirit.
With Green Thoughts, Tammi