Monday, February 26, 2024

For better or worse

Cliff has been having spells of vertigo once every two or three weeks for quite a while.  He was given two prescriptions to use until he goes to his appointment for vestibular therapy this Wednesday, and those have been taking care of his dry-heaves and dizziness... until the last time.  

Thursday evening he was getting ready to go to his tractor club meeting when he got terrible dizzy and sick.  The pills did nothing for him.  He missed the club meeting, but what was worse is that he was still dizzy Friday morning.  And Saturday morning.  And Sunday.  I messaged both my churches to let them know I wouldn't be there.  Both promised to pray for my husband.

So for four days, Cliff couldn't safely get up and do anything without help.  If he wanted to go in another room, I stood up in front of him while he stood up.  Then he'd grab my shoulders, or sometimes just hang onto the back of my shirt with one hand, and away we'd go.  I told him I felt like a pack animal.  He's never had vertigo for this long a time, and he has really been getting depressed about it.  Several times he mentioned that he would hate to be living along under those circumstances, so maybe he will appreciate having me around.  Actually, he always appreciates me; he is a good man.

Yesterday evening he still had a little dizziness, but he could walk around without help for the first time in four days.  We'll see what happens this morning when he gets up.  I am hoping he will be able to drive to his appointment in Independence, because I don't drive.  His sister would gladly come and take him, but she's having health problems of her own.  He will talk to his brother today and see if he would be able to take him; I'm sure he'd be glad to, but he and his wife are older than we are and have lots of doctor appointments, so he may not be free to do it.

So that's the kind of fun we've been having.

I planted more things in the garden yesterday:  Onions, cabbage, beets, and radishes.  When I go outside, I take my phone in case Cliff needs me.

I am trying to keep from worrying over this drought.  I do love the sunny skies and warm temperature, but we need more winter!  It isn't about my garden so much as the fact that farmers need their crops to grow.  I don't have to raise my own food, but if the current forecast is right, orchards aren't going to have any fruit around this area.  Yesterday was in the 70's.  Today will be the same.

As you can see, this Tuesday and Wednesday nights are the only time it gets below freezing for the next two weeks.  Oh, and forget those rain chances.  They never happen.  Never.  We just ignore them and go about our business.  Do I have an attitude today?  Maybe so.  In spite of that, I am going to be thankful for another day on this earth, and for this wonderful life I've been given.  

I'm having a great time with rhymes lately:  I got interested in the Gospel of Mark and have written a poem based on Mark chapter one.  I'm still improving it little by little, and if I can ever get through reading it aloud without messing up a line, I will give it to you that way.  I would hope I get it done before Easter, so I can share it with people at church.

My husband is still dizzy, but he is able to walk around on his own, at least.  And I found someone to take him to therapy:  Granddaughter Monica is not working Wednesday, so she will be his chauffeur.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

my winter garden

Four rows are planted in my garden.  Even though we got a bit of snow Friday, the dirt is dry except for right in the rows that I watered with plastic watering cans.  There are peas, spinach, and parsnips.  Oh, and I found some lettuce seeds (really cheap ones) of various kinds last Saturday and planted those.  Seeing the rows reminds me there's a possibility that it might rain more this year, and if it does, the garden will prosper. 

"If ifs and ands were pots and pans, 
We'd have no work for tinkers' hands."

I've tilled practically the whole garden to get rid of the ground-level weeds.  It makes me feel like it's spring.  Of course the more I till the garden, the dryer it gets.

In case you think spinach can't survive in winter, I have evidence to the contrary.  I planted some spinach last year in September.  As usual, we were in a drought.  And it was too late to expect the spinach to mature anyway.  But the few seeds that managed to survive and grow a bit gave me some plants that continued to grow; even several days of zero temperatures failed to kill it.  Below, this is what my September-planted spinach looked like yesterday.

Every time I go to the garden, I grab a nice healthy leaf and eat it, hoping Gabe, my dog, hasn't peed on it.

This is the one I ate yesterday.

The amazing thing is that the tender leaves are now slightly sweet, and are the best-tasting spinach I've ever tasted.

I have great faith that the lettuce will be fine, as well as the spinach and peas I planted a couple of weeks ago, if I can keep them watered sufficiently.  I've never had success with parsnips, so we shall see what happens there.

Here's what parsnip seeds look like:

I planted the seeds on a very windy day; they are so light, I had a problem with keeping them from blowing away as I planted them.

We'll have mostly 50's, 60's, and 70's for two straight weeks.  That isn't good, because all the fruit trees will think it's time to flower and then we'll be hit by cold weather that will kill the blossoms.  During the last three years, I've become a believer in global warming, although it's nothing I'd argue about, simply because there was crazy weather long before I was born.  But in mid-Missouri?  In February?  Yeah, probably.  

This Missouri river-bluff hill we live on is nothing but wind-blown, very sandy soil, so it doesn't hold water well; it can rain two inches on Tuesday and I'll be using the tiller on it two days later.  On the bright side, we have no rocks in our soil, unless you count the Indian arrows and spearheads.

Here's a little poem from my self-published book:


It's Hope that orders garden seed in winter's snow and rain.
Although the world is frozen, Hope can see it born again!
It's Faith that plants the tiny seeds, when spring has not arrived;
The seeds look dry and dormant, but Faith whispers, "They're alive."
It's Love that tends the growing plants, and prays for rain and sun.  
Love hopes and weeds and labors till the garden season's done.
When I work in the garden I'm reminded, row by row,
That hope and faith and love together make the Christian grow.

Now abide faith, hope, and love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.  I Corinthians 13:13