Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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TBT–Granddad’s Garden

Whenever I think about Grandmother and Granddad, there’s usually food involved. Delicious, wonderful, fantastic food.

Grandmother and Granddad

Grandmother and Granddad

One of my first memories is of Granddad Ray’s garden there in Old ‘Ford on the other side of the garage. For as long as I can remember, Granddad always had a garden. Or three. Once, I got in trouble for picking his green tomatoes.

“Honest. All I did was look at the thing and it came off in my hand.” (Not sure they believed it.)

Sometimes in the summertime, we’d get to go to the farm and work with Granddad, and that usually meant we’d go to his garden. That was the best job ever, because Granddad usually took sweet lemonade (actually, a sweet orangy-lemon drink) and we got to eat a watermelon or two if they were ripe. Fresh, warm tomatoes, right off the vine, made lunch delicious!

We lived next door to Grandmother and Granddad in C-Town (and in the same house with them in Old ‘Ford) and had lunch with Grandmother most days.

Grandmother and Granddad, a few years later

Grandmother and Granddad, a few years later

Granddad didn’t just raise lots of food, he shared the veggies with the whole family, and very lucky friends.

I loved it in the spring when he dug new potatoes. Grandmother would boil them, slip off the peels and then fry the whole boiled potatoes! She’d also cook new potatoes in with the green beans Granddad raised. Bacon drippings gave it the best flavor! Spring onions and a bowl of those green beans was a meal that would make your tongue lap your brains out! (That’s a Daddy/Granddad saying.)

Sometimes, Grandmother would fry the mountain of squash that Granddad brought in. She’d cut up a crookneck in thin slices, soak them in salt water, coat them in flour and fry. YUM-MY! Better than potato chips. (Grandma Reeves wouldn’t eat squash because she said it was “poor folks’ food.” Made me glad to be poor!)

 

Notice, there’s a theme here. Fry it or add bacon drippings to it (or fry it in bacon drippings) and no matter what you’re cooking, it’ll taste great! (And your grandchildren will have very happy memories about the time they spent with you.) Might not be the healthiest eats in the world, but it made me feel very loved.

Do you have foody memories of your grandparents? What’s your favorite?

 

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Hitler AND Attila in MY Garden?

It rained here this weekend, and cooled down enough for me to take a stroll through my back yard. Know what I noticed?

Things have gone wild!

Mainly weeds. (Grass that grows in my garden=weeds.)

Remember the vine trying to take over the world?

Attila the Vine? I’d planned to move him (or at least part of him) but with the weather as dry as it was, I thought I’d wait until fall. Instead, I wound him around a pyramid thingy he grows on.

There are so many layers now, I may never find the pyramid thingy again.

This is the best part of my garden. (The wildest, at least.)

The green pile on the left that looks like Cousin It on St. Paddy’s Day (Cousin It–Adams Family. Remember?) is Attila the Vine. In the back is a castor bean plant. Yes, they’re supposed to be poison, but I haven’t seen any little animals dropping over in my garden.

I planted it to keep moles and gophers out of my yard. And it worked . . . kinda. I’ve seen only one mole run since I started planting castors. It started in the middle of my yard and headed (can you guess?) STRAIGHT for the plant.

Of course, it might have been a mole who strolled up to the plant, saw it was a poison bean, dove into the earth and drilled away. (I’m remembering a cartoon from my childhood as I write with a gopher working under a garden, pulling veggies from the roof of his run. Anybody remember that?)

Now meet Hitler.

Hitler is a gang of watermelons. They, too, are trying to take over the world.

See the thing hanging on the fence to the right of the bean, next to a star?

There you go. You can tell what it is now, right? It’s a watermelon. Anybody else grow watermelons on their fence?

These watermelon plants are volunteers. I planted them last year, and they came back.

(Isn’t winter supposed to kill off things like watermelons and pumpkins? Wait. Did we have a winter last year?)

Anyway, this gang has reached out to all parts of the garden and they’re even growing over Cousin It. (I pull them off, they crawl back on. What’s up with that?)

This guy was stuck in the back by that star, but I pulled it out,

which MIGHT have been a mistake. I’m not sure how much longer the vine can hold it there. (I wonder if a sling would help? Anyone who’s just over a carpal tunnel surgery want to donate?)

I have a few melons growing on the ground, too.

They’re also growing down the wall at the back of my garden into someone else’s yard. Yes, there are melons down there, and I can’t get to them. One even split open. *sigh*

Anybody know how to tell when a watermelon is ripe?


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Garden Touring!

I mentioned over at WRITINGSLUTS that I went to a garden tour this week. I don’t know if you’ve noticed before, but when you’re in a garden, everyone is a friend!

I went out Thursday morning, and then took Omega out on Friday. We had so much fun! Even ran into a few people who tried to pretend they didn’t know me. I didn’t let ’em get away with it though. 🙂

I thought I’d share my pictures with you.

This is the front of the garden shed Vickie had built (envy, envy). It fits perfectly into her landscape. I want one!

Trellis/garden bench.


I don’t remember the name of this one, but it’s fuzzy like bunny ears. So pretty!

Such a beautiful entry for her house!

Blanket flower and mumble mumble. (forgot again)

She keeps these Cleome (spider flowers) in pots because they’re so invasive.

I didn’t catch this fella’s name, but he came from Bustani Plant Farm in Stillwater, OK.

This is Papyrus. Yep, like the Egyptians used to write on. Vickie says they take a lot of water, but they’re so different! Worth the trouble.

Okay, besides working, trying to survive a cold/pneumonia and sleeping too much, that’s what I’ve been up to. Where’ve you been keeping yourself?