June 2010

a miscellany

My thoughts are scattered these days, as I hide
from the heat, get used to regular life after my friend has
returned home, watch much too much Wimbledon (can
there be such a thing?), wait for the rest of my family
to return from far-away adventures and just generally
feel as tho’ I am also waiting for summer to settle into
familiar patterns….tho’ it will have to be a new familiar,
won’t it? The first summer with my mom living with us,
my sons here and there, my business quiet.

So while I am gathering my thoughts
around me, here is a smattering of this and
that from the week past.

The fruit crumble (blackberries and cherries from
the kitchen garden) and banana bread (bananas from
the pedestal fruit plate in the kitchen!) await
Dori, my mom and I for a summer breakfast
on the porch.

…traces of a dear friend’s visit linger in our home…

….how the chicks are growing! Hard to get a clear picture
with all their activity and busy-ness in their new, more spacious
digs. I did a very quick redecoration of our rather decrepit
chicken apartment….old calendar pages on the walls and pale
blue and white fabric draping the outsides make it pleasant
for me to visit throughout the day to replenish water
and food…I don’t know quite what they think of it,
tho’ they seem to be considering…

…each little hen’s personality is emerging….this is Funny Face
(and therefore, her name will most likely be Audrey-after
Audrey Hepburn in the lovely old movie Funny Face). And we
have a Cally (because the littlest yellow chick was just the
perfect calendar chick when she first arrived) and
perhaps a Maya…

…that will be my eldest son’s decision. He has a way with
chickens and is newly returned from Guatemala. It has changed
him in all the good ways you hope that travel will change a
beloved growing-up child….and is also influencing his

May your summer have arrived…perhaps in both
familiar and unfamiliar ways. Life is change, as I am
constantly reminded…I suppose the art of Life is finding
repose and, dare I say, even inspiration in both the well-
known and the just-getting-to-know and the unexpected
ingredients of being here.

it does not seem to matter….


“Ten years ago when James and Rhoda had taken
up their abode in Tassieknowe the whole house had
been redecorated: the woodwork painted white and
the walls distempered in various soft colours. Nothing
much had been done since then, so it was a trifle
shabby, but that did not seem to matter.”

-D. E. Stevenson
Bel Lamington

I took great comfort in this quote as I prepared for
Dori’s visit this week (the lovely reason I have been
quite absent here). You know how it can be before a
guest comes, especially for the first time, and especially
when you haven’t had enough spare time in the months
before to accomplish all the little things around house
and garden that you imagined you would.

But it really “does not seem to matter”. We are
picking blackberries together and watching movies
with my mother and Dori is writing down recipes
from my cookbooks and I am reading out inspiring
online things to her and we are staying up much
too late talking. It is wonderful.

And the time will soon come to talk-not of cabbages
and kings-but of little chicks and cherry crumble and
Queen Anne’s Lace. Soon, soon!