Labor Day Indoors

The old faithful lawnmower

The old faithful lawnmower

September 8 – Of all surprising behavior for the two of us, we spent Labor Day inside, not working outdoors. Having had no rain for some time, the ground was really hard and dry during the weekend when we did a lot of jobs around the place. In fact, when I mowed the lawn, big clouds of gray dust came zooming right at me and moved slowly along, blocking out the grass in front of me. No wonder the lawn ended up with some crooked lines! Normally, when I mow, the grass is so thick and sturdy that it doesn’t take long for the green stuff to grow fast enough that I have to get out and mow once more. Believe it or not, this time, because of our being so busy doing other tasks here at home, and going in to town to visit our friends, both in Pleasant Hill and Lee’s Summit, it was almost two weeks since the last mowing!

I was really surprised to see that the mower didn’t leave piles of cut grass behind as I mowed. I was so tired by the time we had finished various tasks outside, that Dale told me I had better “wait till tomorrow” to complete the job. Unfortunately, that “tomorrow” wasn’t possible due to the rain. And more came during the day. Everybody around here knows that I like to finish the job once I start, but since we did need the rain so badly, I am glad that the dust didn’t blow up today while we finished things up.

Corn on the cob

Corn on the cob

There was plenty to do inside, that’s for sure! When we spend most of the day outside, it’s pretty impossible to do a lot of cleaning and cooking Good thing that Dale enjoys lots of different kinds of foods, and I have learned through the years not to cook what he doesn’t! I ended up making two big baking pans of brownies, one of his favorite cookies, an apricot cobbler, and make sure that he has some corn-on-the cob to chew on.

We got up early Sunday morning, skipping breakfast so that we would have more time outdoors before the temps rose into the nineties, and the humidity was really high! Probably a week ago I raked up the piles of pond primrose that we have raked out of the pond on one side. Since then both of us had finished the job of raking and had to go back to pick up all of the piles and dump them into the big weeds and bushes which border the mowed area. Besides the primrose, there were several big heaps of wild rosebushes, vines, tall weeds, and small willows waiting to be dragged off the scene using the big blue tarp. As we moved into the unmowed section, with very tall weeds blocking our way, I wondered if there were still lots of chiggers just waiting for breakfast to arrive! No answer to that right then, but by morning we knew, as we had red itchy spots all over us, left by the chiggers!

Canned tomato juice (from previous years)

Canned tomato juice (from previous years)

Tomatoes are coming out in all their glory these days, and there are plenty to eat, even after we distribute a lot to the neighbors. Because we still have shelves full of tomato juice in the basement, I decided not to can any this year. Now that’s a first for me! Fifty years of putting up hundreds of those jars of juice, or stewed tomatoes, and this year nothing!

My mom, who put up hundreds of all kinds of produce, would wonder what happened to my head! She would have to remember though, that there are now only two of us in this home, where she started out with nine! Of course when we were kids nobody had ever seen a freezer, but we now have two of them filled to the brim, mostly with things that we have raised in the garden, or made from scratch.

So at least we had one day away from the heat and humidity, felt the cool breezes coming through the doors and windows, and celebrated Labor Day by resting up from all of the heavy work that we have been doing outside! – CHRIS

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