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Collard Greens, A Warm Horse, and Fiction, Life in Idaho’s Heart

November 12, 2011

Thank you to all who have missed my blog and have clamored for more. It’s not that I haven’t been writing, quite the opposite. I am immersed in the rewrite of my next novel, in that all-consuming phase in which my mind lives in Pacheco Falls and the lives of my characters rule me. I have piles of notes and drafts on surfaces that seem to span throughout the rooms in our house. I emerge to speak to Tim and when I forget, he knocks at my mental door. But, I’ve had the desire to share how my fall garden turned out. This blog has been pecking at the edges of my mind. Now that the bounty has been mostly consumed (I just put some of my collard greens in the chicken soup today) I must share. On August 15th, I planted the fall garden here at 6448 feet elevation. Next year I will plant the fall crops on August 1st just to get that extra few weeks of warmish weather. I have graced our table with kale, swiss chard, spinach, collard greens, beets, green onions, and more. Underneath a thick layer of straw covered with a horse blanket, that is covered with yet more straw, still lurks a row of beets and a few green onions. I’m almost afraid to delve into this cache, it’s been in the single digits at night here lately.

The success of my garden has inspired me to build yet another in anticipation of spring, in about a hundred years from now. This one is of course, even more massive. I will be able to feed a small nation, so come out and visit, but don’t forget your boots and your work gloves. My building verve has not limited itself. I built a new circle for ornamentals and when I decided to surround its raised borders with large chunks of the red rock of Bartlett Point, I tapped on Tim’s shoulder for help. He turned off his chain saw, took off his earphones and asked me if it was a necessary endeavor (ie, not food). I said, “Beauty is necessary.” He fired up the 4 wheeler and heaved home my rocks.

Everyday, as the temperature warms near 30 degrees, Tim and I head outside to work on our respective tasks. He cuts wood and I tend and build garden spaces in the heat of the day. If the temp reaches 40, we start to strip down. All work makes us a dull couple, so we sprinkle in some rides on the girls, who look at us like we’re nuts. On Sunday, we watch football, eat popcorn and drink hot chocolate. Today we helped a neighbor move some cows from Dry Canyon to her winter pasture. Our young horses aren’t much help, but we did turn around in the frigid wind to retrieve the trailer. Thank goodness for multiple layers and warm gloves. Next ride, I’m breaking out the long underwear.

One Comment leave one →
  1. November 12, 2011 10:06 pm

    Welcome back from Pacheco Falls. I know the feeling. When ‘trucking’ with my fictious friend, Rick Johnson, it’s like I’m not 80 and retired, but more like I’m ‘On The Road Again’.

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