Dear Sunday Letter friends,
I’m giving this past week double checkmarks ✔✔ because I cooked TWO HOT SUPPERS complete with side vegetables, I finished and submitted a freelance article, and I found a cool rock I’m pretty sure is filled with magic.
Stick with me people. We’re going places.
Mostly in circles.
Oh sure, there’s plenty I didn’t accomplish during the week, but I choose to not think about those things in this Sunday Letter.
Seven Hours Later
John and I devoted Friday in its entirety to the backyard of our little cottage. Seven hours later (plus lots of other untold hours spent on prior days and weeks and months), we can finally see progress. John has wrangled and dug out a zillion bamboo roots and turned and leveled the entire space with a shovel and rake. I have hauled the same pile of rocks from one corner of the yard to another until finally we decided on an actual rock-solid plan—a dry-stack wall.
On Friday, I transformed a haphazard rock pile into something that looks pretty good if I do say so.
Oh, there’s still much to be done. Come, go with the flow and imagine the bed with topsoil and mulch. A few plants. Maybe a bench. It will be brilliant.
Other than the strain on my lower back and upper arms, building the dry-stack wall was a bit like playing with blocks. Or working a puzzle. Finding just the right stone for a certain spot takes patience. Yes, in the process I disturbed a whole ecosystem of roly-poly bugs, centipedes, and spiders. Snails, too. But no creatures were harmed in the stone-toting exercise.
Today I can report we’ve sowed grass seed and covered it with straw to keep it from washing out. (I didn’t take a picture of the seed or straw.)
Crossing our fingers the grass will sprout.
With only two of us, this whole yard project is a mighty slow process. And I’ve had plenty of time to think about how our ancestors cleared this place we call home.
I can’t imagine.
They cut down trees, drained snake-infested swampland, plowed the ground into one slow row at a time. And at the end of each day, they didn’t have the luxury of a hot shower or long bath. They couldn’t whip up supper with barely a thought. They had no lazy Saturday afternoons to veg on the couch watching Baylor get beat by Oklahoma.
As if our neighborhood isn’t unique enough, we have our very own dog whisperer. He happens to be my brother-in-law, Mark. Mark drives through the neighborhood each morning with a box of Milk-Bones. Lucy and Annabelle look for his car. They know his car.
They search him out.
Now their friends know his car.
He’s like the ice cream man for doggies.
Every neighborhood should have one.
And p.s. Have you ever met someone your dog didn’t like? Avoid those persons.
A Fun Bunch
This past week, I was invited to another Fayetteville book club, and they were such a fun bunch! Karen, the host, served my favorite sort of spread—lots and lots of appetizers! I could live on appetizers. Couldn’t you? There was a corn dip I could have gobbled with a spoon, pull-apart ham and cheese sliders, chopped salad, and a variety of other dips and nibbles.
Karen’s mother-in-law, Dottie, baked homemade chocolate chip cookies that rivaled bakery fare. I figure we are probably related, at least distant cousins. Not because of her baking skills (I have none) but because she moved to Fayetteville from her home on Crowley’s Ridge, and she was born near Marked Tree.
You know how you just connect with certain people? That’s how I felt with this group of ladies. If they had invited me to stay all night for an old-fashioned bunkin party, I would have. And I know we would have watched scary movies and maybe even had a Gracie Lee seance. (All in fun so please don’t lecture me about the devil.)
The crazy thing—I didn’t take a single picture of the entire night.
Maybe a do-over is in order. ?
I did leave with an invitation to join their book club—yay!—along with a bag of Dottie’s delicious cookies which turned out to be the only evidence of my enjoyable evening. And of course, even my cookie evidence is now gone like the wind.
Look what I found…
This is no ordinary rock. You can’t tell from the flat picture, but beneath the embedded dirt, a sparkly quartz crystal shines. I found this gem in the back yard while digging and hauling rocks. Along with bamboo roots and other invasive species, we have a treasure trove. If you’ve been reading my blog regularly, you may remember we’ve found marbles, a geode, pieces of pottery and glass, a Scream rock, and lots of other interesting objects d’ art.
It’s almost as though the earth is saying, just keep working, and I’ll reward you with an arrowhead. Maybe an old button.
What about a jar of buried money? Or gold bars, pretty please?
And the earth laughs and laughs.
Does anyone know how to properly clean a crystal?
Things Momma Says
Things Momma Says on the topic of beauty (after a day spent packing up her storage unit)…
I’ve always been a dishwater blonde, but today my hair looks like dishwater sure enough.
That’s it for the last Sunday Letter of September. Tomorrow is October 1.?
Have a productive, treasure-filled week everyone!
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.
[tweetthis]Sunday Letter Time with treasures and cookies and things Momma says[/tweetthis]
The Del Vikings, Come Go With Me
Barbara Tate says
The backyard is looking marvelous. A labor of love❤️, no doubt. Only six sleeps! Or maybe seven? Who knows?
Thanks for the memories and laughs ?
Talya Tate Boerner says
Cuzin Ken says
2 comments: First, if you are going to be moving all those rocks back and forth, you have to change your name to Ms.Popeye and you need to eat a lot more spinach! Ha!
Second: I have a t-shirt that reads: If my dog does not like you, I probably won’t like you either and that’s ok with me!
Talya Tate Boerner says
1) I do need to eat more spinach. 2) Good shirt.
Sharon Collins says
When you finish moving those rocks around, you are going to need a manicure, aren’t you? What an accomplishment!
Talya Tate Boerner says