Notes from the Field

always love lilacs

I keep waiting for my switch to flip, you know, to wake up one morning and simply get my hustle back on. Just can’t seem to really focus, and one day turns into the next. It seems I’ll do most anything or nothing at all to move that needle of accomplishment. 

I’ll write a sentence or three and then delete. I’ll try again and then also delete. I’ll shut the laptop and then it will be Wednesday and the week is almost over. 

Anyway, here’s what’s truly happening with a few notes from the field:

I’ve been settled in south Boston since April 17th, our 650 square foot one-bedroom flat is almost completely decorated. There’s a small interior design shop on Broadway, Deirfiur Home, I’ve been perusing their website, placing items in my cart, and Justine delivers. I’ll do a separate post about the spaces I’ve finished. 

make ahead baked French toast, spinach egg bake, lettuces from the new garden, and mint garnish on the fruit
always adding vegetables, and always using every last bit: pepper and tomato were from last night’s barbecue

Three home cooked meals a day are our new normal, we splurge and get door drop dinner delivery maybe once a week or so. 

I’m always taking photos of brownstones that I like
inspired to put in some window boxes but not sure who would water them. Linnie has a new baby!

Caroline and I walk at least 10k steps a day, masks on of course, and that’s been pretty much non-negotiable.

really trying to get back to work, maybe I’ll just sit here on the floor and take selfies

Really trying to get back to work, I’m just so distracted. 

simply can’t resist her

Peyton is the most beautiful creature I’ve laid eyes on in the last twenty years. Time with this new little family I wouldn’t trade anything for. 

Online learning continues, and as such I’ve planted a small garden. The six-week Organic Gardening course wraps up this Saturday. Quizzes, homework assignments and journal entries have kept my mind engaged, that’s a good thing. Here below is a required journal entry, always striving to write more and share.

Finally, a Gardener

Lucky me, I’ve arrived. Coming up on double nickel this July and I can confidently call myself a gardener.  A long winding path with bumps and mistakes, no matter, it’s a wonderful world this gardening thing. 

I know it’s true, that I’m now a gardener- when I walk, I look at plantings, containers, and landscapes, taking it all in. I want to stop at nurseries and browse websites. I listen to gardening podcasts, now so much more interesting and enriching than self-help (what is self-help anyway in 2020?) and download and order books about dirt. 

Our little spring garden in Boston is a bright little spot- pansies, herbs, snap peas starting to grow up the fence. Even snow in May can’t stand in our way, we’re gardening. All kitchen cuttings (coffee grounds, fruit and vegetable trimmings, eggshells, paper towels) go in a countertop compost bin. We have so many greens and not nearly enough brown for the outdoor receptable I went for a walk with an extra-size clear bag and gathered last year’s fall leaves from the abandoned city streets, and Seaport. Who was this woman walking with determination with a sack of old leaves over her shoulder? 

yeah, I’m now roadside clean-up crew
yes, I really walked to Seaport and gathered old leaves for the compost bin I installed, not sure Caroline and Sean are a fan, oh well

This woman is about teaching her tribe that plants are best when watered at their roots, a deep, long soak. I’m not going to touch down and simply dust you every day, I’m going deep, and I’m in for the long haul. That mixing it up, sowing different plants in different spots in different seasons benefits the whole, hello biodiversity, pollination and companion planting, I love you all different. 

Oh, and we have plans. Plans for food, plans for flowers, all written down. A checklist of sorts: plant, mulch, tend, harvest, observe, record. Sometimes we’re kind of on track, and sometimes it goes completely askew, this is life you know. 

I’m here right now in this safe little spot, a 23’ foot square of yard space to ponder about with a brand-new grand babe. We’re all tucked in, fences all around, and she’s all swaddled up. Easy, grand babe, take it all in. We’ve got you, you’re all we’re about. Today you had six sets of eyes on you watching your breath. This garden of yours will grow with you. 

Your momma now knows to how to deadhead and pinch back some buds. After the spring harvest of that sweet lettuce she’ll plant carrots, or cucumbers. When the warm weather comes and the pansies bolt, she’ll tuck in marigolds, and add some more basil. 

In a week or ten days I’ll head west, Boston to Buffalo, and start all over again, the digging in, the garden. I’ve got acres to tend. 

City-side Buffalo is the twelve-month home-base, a black wrought iron gate and mature composed beds. I rush to keep you looking all good and upright. There are neighbors, and expectations, and the ivy needs to be contained. Thinking hard now city-garden what is the rush? I trust I’ll intuitively tend to you. 

Countryside Eden is really our canvas. This summer you will feel our uninterrupted love. No flights to catch, no sporting games, no parties to host or attend, it’s just us, and honestly just a little deep down inside I’m happy, I can stay put.

There will be lettuce for salads, and hydrangea for the table. Maybe not so much fruit from the trees this year, April and early May you we’re so very cold. We’ll have tomatoes, and peppers (three different colors!), and pesto. 

I’ll cut chives for the potatoes, and mint for the drinks. I’ll dig and divide the Hosta and put them where they’ll be more comfortable, along in the shade. 

I’m doing Cosmos! Both the drink and the flower! Seeds let’s get the party started, it’s only us so let’s not hold back. You’re pretty, and you make us feel good, maybe we’ll do double, we’re living a pandemic. 

Anyway, Garden, there’s few other places I’d really like to be. You’ve been there all along, right there beside me, behind me, in front of me. I’m studying you; I’m working you, and finally now I’m comfortable with you, I’m finally a gardener.

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1 Comment

  1. Loved reading this Rebecca as I look at my very sad Arugula that I was so excited to plant! Some say it grows like weeds in their garden — not mine! I think I need a gardening course! Recommendations? Thank you for inspiring me especially during this time of Covid! I, too, have embraced home and hearth and continue to follow your lead! Stay well! xoxo

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