But, do you deadhead Dahlias?

Actually, yes, by deadheading your dahlia it will encourage new growth. I sort of wish I had that kind of feature for myself. Removing dead-end roads and dead-end feelings so that where there was a shrivelly mess now there was a darling bright new bud of a flower! Someone asked me when I had time to garden and the truth is, I don’t have time so I garden before sunrise and in the dark via flashlights or in a timed setting when I run home to let the dogs out. But I can’t not thrash about in the dirt. Abstaining from dirt is a form of misery. If I ever go to prison for book hoarding or for murdering the jerk that invented the phrase “muffin-top” the thing that will do me in is the lack of dirt.

Twining vines with tiny flowers

When we had to move off the farm I swore off gardening. I had to leave behind so many plants that loved that black, black dirt and since we were renting again, I didn’t want to lose more plants and waste more time. But once we moved in I knew it was beyond my control. This little house was built with much love and way more imagination and it didn’t have a garden, no plants at all other than a charming ring of forest and a tree in the front of yard with a little ring of stones. And it’s plopped on a very busy road. A road much favored by kids in loud, loud trucks on their exciting loop to the Food Lion parking lot and back and so to combat all the reality of THAT, why, I had no choice but to overload the yard with pots and plants and twinkle lights. Because whomever comes after us, would surely appreciate the smell of rosemary after rain, the scent of crushed mint underfoot and fat dahilas happily nodding at them in the spring.


In a weird twist of fate, I have apparently acquired a Jumanji-like power, so citizens of the surrounds BEWARE! I am not a fan of zebra print, never have been, but you better bet I am not going to pass up a set of “zebra strip club mugs” at a thrift store.

So I bought them because they cracked me up. And then two hours later, somebody gave me a canvas print with a zebra background. Really. Ask Shawn, he was there. I tried to not take it but they insisted. And then as I was driving home


The kids and I FREAKED OUT. That zebra was NOT there before. We are very familiar with this particular yard. This was a new resident!!!!!! What have I done??????? Because I bought two other questionable items the day before (in fact one of them my friend had posted as a thing she proudly had NOT bought) so somewhere has someone’s grandmother gone mad???

Last year, capped off by losing that little farm took the wind out of my sails. It really did. And then after we were barely settled my most wonderful cat died and I still can’t talk about it without bawling and it’s been months now. You would have hoped that after the ground-leveling that was the pandemic that you would see some growth in people. But was not the case. It means you can’t change the world, but you can change yourself and hope that by what you do it will help others. I don’t try to understand people, I don’t. It’s not my place to make you explain yourself or your situation. It is my job to simply care for you in the manner you need at the appropriate time. And I never do not have enough time to hear you out, feed your hunger or help you do anything. Somebody said to me one time, “Not my monkeys, not my circus,” and I swore to myself that nobody would EVER accuse me of such a cavalier attitude towards peoples hopes and dreams. That’s why everything is such a mess. People are so wrapped up in their own brains they are virtually incapable of organic empathy. Instead they are told what to feel by whatever particular social storm is brewing that week. BUT NOT MY PEOPLE. In an effort to not stew in my own juices of woe because of my situation I have been rustling up different local charities that kind of fly under the radar that needed stuff and help. AND MY PEOPLE SHOWED UP!!!!! You guys donated tons of jewelry, VHS tapes, books, a tv and dvd player, DVDS, stuffed animals…all beautiful items in wonderful condition to children who really, really need hope. Hope and love and some happy, and people really went out of their way to help. And it just made me cry happy tears. Thank you for being the salt of the earth, most beautiful caring people. It’s a simply beautiful thing.


Pulled out of my comfort zone and participated in a cooking competition. I have been invited on a lot of shows and competitions for years now and always said “no”. Well after the horrors of last year, I decided, I might as well do one to make sure I really do hate this as much as I think I do. Yep. I do. I am not one for attention, would rather clean a toilet than have my picture taken and loathe all type of television and questions. As I say to my kids, “Too many questions sounds like a complaint!” This competition was the perfect storm of evil. Loads of people, cameras, questions and the like. By the time I completed it I was white-lipped, covered in goosebumps and shaking. I sat in my car for 30 minutes before I drove away and then proceeded to get lost and take a rather scenic detour from Morehead City to home. And I realized as I was presenting/defending my food to the judges that I don’t care to do that, I don’t WANT to do that. I want that food to make you a friend. I want it to fill a cranny in your soul that needed some warming to remind you that simple is good and happy is good and you can’t cry while chewing. (that’s a fact.) I got to spend these past weekends celebrating through food some of my extended children-they graduated from high school and others had birthdays and others epic anniversaries and Aunt Sam made them what they wanted or didn’t know was coming and were surprised and it just was the most fun! No, I didn’t get to attend any of these festivities but they were well documented and shared with me 🙂

Last year’s fear IS weird and cobwebby and is something everyone has to deal with daily. And you just can’t do anything else but be patient. I hate being patient. Ugh. So I garden and read. I read loads. Have you ever taken a speed reading test? It’s kind of fun! Try it! http://www.freereadingtest.com/

It hasn’t all been bad, no. And the dark does make the good shine so much brighter. And it makes you appreciate the efforts of those that are willing to go the extra mile for no real reason. And to make ordinary days the red-letter days.

Published by sugaronfrontst

Bookstore/Bakery/Microfarm in the South!

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