Dear Sunday Letter friends,
Happy Mother’s Day to all those who mother! Mothers have all the essential jobs. They dry tears, provide motivation, feather nests (and later push us from the nest)—teaching, encouraging, scolding, doing all the things that keep the world spinning.
Y’all know how special my Momma is. Even within the space of my short Sunday Letters, she keeps all of us laughing. (You should be with her in person.)
Last week, our pink flamingoes got a long overdue bath.
We purchased these two vintage flamingoes years ago at Curiosities in Dallas. They migrated with us to Fayetteville where they have made their home beside our small water feature. (I often wonder if they miss their Dallas pool?)
The past year was tough on everyone.
The before and after bath pics are shocking. I was embarrassed for them—what dirty birds they had become!
Now, clean again, they are happily watching over the back yard, no longer covered in pollen and gunk. Maybe I’ll give their feathers a paint refresh soon. Goodness knows, they deserve it.
One of my orchids will soon be re-blooming. I don’t know about you, but in my world, this is a cause for celebration. I am especially happy about this after having repotted my orchids in January. (Sometimes simply not causing harm is reason enough to celebrate.)
My orchid rebloom tips HERE.
Also this week, the first spring bud of our knockout roses is about to open. Just in time for Mother’s Day.
There were several other noteworthy firsts this week. First rose-breasted grosbeaks and orioles at our feeders this spring. First time I’ve heard an owl in our backyard since we moved to Fayetteville. Exciting!
Speaking of birds, today is Global Big Day, an annual celebration of World Migratory Bird Day. I’ll be participating by observing and reporting the birds at our feeders this afternoon. I hope the grosbeaks and orioles stick around for today’s counting. You can join in the fun at ebird.com.
Today for our Mother’s Day lunch, I’m making old-fashioned chicken and dumplings with lemon pie for dessert. Chicken and dumplings always remind me of my Mammaw Ruby. She made the best chicken and dumplings EVER. And pie reminds me of Nana. Nana was a big believer in dessert.
I’m lucky to have grown up with two sets of grandparents who lived nearby. And I had lots of aunts who provided plenty of mothering to me. Although most of these lovely women have been gone for decades, the older I get the more obvious it becomes that they never truly leave. They become part of us in subtle ways, through memories that manifest into habit, into mannerisms and passions and baking pie on Mother’s Day.
Crushed Oyster Shell
I learned something interesting last week from an online class at the Botanical Garden of the Ozarks. Certain herbs and leafy greens will grow more vigorously if “mulched” with crushed oyster shell. Oyster shell provides calcium and micronutrients, balances the soil pH levels, and keeps the soil from becoming compacted.
Sooooo, I purchased a small box of crushed oyster shell from Down to Earth All Natural Fertilizers and added it around my rosemary, sage, and lavender. These plants don’t like soggy feet and I’m hoping the shell will help keep the lower foliage happy. If you’ve ever used diatomaceous earth in your garden, crushed oyster shell is much like that—a fine, dry powder.
Have you ever used crushed oyster shell in your garden?
I’m expecting great things from my herbs this year!
Things Momma Said:
I just won a crossword tournament that I didn’t know I was in.
As always, thanks for reading another Sunday Letter. I cannot believe how fast this year is passing. I’m pretty sure if I didn’t write these weekly letters, I would lose all track of time.
Let’s all try to do something this week that would make our Mommas proud.
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.