Okay, we give up. Our campaign against ground squirrels has ended in rout for the little buggers — sheer numbers have overwhelmed our firecrackers, boy pee, poison, hired guns, shouting. We’ve withdrawn to the patio and flower beds around the house on which we’ve sprinkled cayenne in the last ditch hope to protect our petunias and geraniums. Plenty of lettuce and green beans at the grocery, right?

What about the thistle mentioned in the last blog? After several days slogging around the pastures with a backpack sprayer addressing the thistle and tansy, Larry called our guy at Fish and Wildlife. “Too late to spray,” he says. “Only thing you can do now is mow.”

Wishing he’d called Jarod a week ago, Larry headed for the barn, hitched the brush hog to the John Deere, and is just now employing the nuclear option. Off with their heads! It’s supposed to hit 95 this afternoon, so best get the farm work done early.

As you can imagine, I’m not much help when farm work gets beyond weed whacking, so have been staying inside these hot days making pickles with Vik, more pickles — bread and butter — with Larry manning the slicer. An earlier round of sauerkraut is now fermenting away in the garage refrigerator, but that’s about it until and if the apples ripen. We still have “produce” from last year in the freezer, and I made something resembling pear crisp yesterday. Nothing crisp about it. Ugh. But Larry will eat it. Good man.

So what have I been doing? Reading all day and painting my nails? Kind of. But those of you who are old like me may remember suffering through home ec back in high school days. Had to make a blouse or skirt or something, maybe an apron for the beginners? My sisters and I lived in outgrown clothes packed up from family in Ohio, and on my mom’s sewing skills. Which weren’t wonderful. As in, she’d buy a bolt of cloth in a burst of economy or efficiency and make up matching outfits for the four of us. Oh God. Martha finally got a job at a clothing store in the summer and we could use our babysitting/crop-picking/cannery-work money on real clothes.

Does that all sound appropriately pitiful? Yeah! It was. Well, somehow I never got over it, and have turned again to my sewing machine. So the point of this long narrative is that I needed a yard of plain white shirting, and went to the only fabric store in town, JoAnn’s. They didn’t have white. I mean? We’re very busy, the clerk told me. Everyone’s stocking up.

Can this be true? No one I know but me sews anything in the clothing line. Sure, quilting is definitely a thing, but we can hardly be running low on white cotton. Sigh. Interesting times.

Okay, I’m taking a moment to go out and shoot photos. We want to see Larry on the tractor, after all. Back soon.

Looks hot and tired, huh? While I was out with my phone I decided to take a few more shots:

Larry’s garden. I’m not that fond of orange flowers, but when I asked him what was up, he said because he can see orange flowers. Oh. Color blind, he can’t see all the lovely rose, pink, lavender blossoms. Awww. Well bless his heart. It’s his garden, after all.

We’re going for Biggest Onion at the county fair. These are Walla Wallas, one of which will last us a week, and we have maybe 25? Plus another 50 assorted red, yellow. Seems the squirrels don’t like onions.

And the grapes. Not ripe yet, but the question is whether the birds will get them all when they are.

A little farm trivia: chickens have a particular song when they lay an egg, which I can’t reproduce but you’d know if you hear it. So while I was taking photos, Rhody climbed up on the water dispenser and started singing. Oh good, I thought, I’ll just bring the egg in on my way. Except it was Toastie’s egg. What the heck? She was crowing because her buddy laid an egg? Maybe she doesn’t know we can tell the difference. Hmmm.

Larry just came in, says he’s through for the day. For sure. Well, call me if you want a supply of onions!

One thought on “LAZY DAYS?”

  1. The solution is right under your nose. Plant the whole farm – landscaping and all – in onions. BOOM! Ground squirrels gone on to other feeding grounds . You’re Welcome!

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