The Kitchen Genius always cooks special meals for me on holidays like Mother’s Day, my birthday, Valentine’s Day and our anniversary. It’s both incredibly touching and delicious. But life and marriage aren’t just about the big romantic moments. It’s the little things done day in and day out that keep a relationship strong.
Every Saturday morning, KG makes oatmeal for our breakfast. This isn’t just any oatmeal. He adds wonderful ingredients like golden raisins, chopped walnuts, apples and cinnamon. A secret touch that really makes it delicious is the dab of butter melting on top that he adds just before he serves it. Trust me – it’s totally worth the calories. Some whole milk and a drizzle of real maple syrup and breakfast is served.
It may seem more like a fall or winter breakfast, but we’ve discovered it is also the perfect fuel for a day that will be spent in the gardens. For weeks now, we’ve been out tilling the various gardens, adding compost and leaf rot and planting flowers, shrubs and veggies. The perennial garden out front now has two new forsythia bushes, a new lilac bush, a sweet pepper bush, two new beach plum bushes and a fig tree.
We transplanted a dwarf evergreen that was languishing in the back yard out front and planted five more perennial flowers. For a splash of color, I put petunias in pots on stumps from old trees and inside the seat of an antique chair. More pots line the walkway.
Out back I planted a lily and cutting garden as well as a shade garden filled with hostas, bleeding hearts and astilbe. KG has sown wild flower seeds all over the yard. It’s an experiment for those areas we haven’t gotten around to yet and have run out of money to fill.
In the veggie garden, the leeks are coming along slowly, but the lettuce and kale are thriving. The radishes and peas have popped up, but the potatoes are taking their time. I added a section of Swiss chard and started lying out paths of Mulch Master to keep the weeds down and provide a cushion for my knees. It also makes the garden look very tidy, at least so far.
Depending on the weather, I’m planning on adding the beans, cucumbers, tomatoes, beets, carrots and patty pan squash soon. This upcoming weekend, we will also get started at our plot in the Community Garden. We’ll be happy to get it rototilled and weeded, so it will be ready for planting next weekend.
I inherited my love of gardening from my Grandpa Palmer, who always set aside a little plot for me in his garden when I was a child. He taught me how to plant vegetables and he tended his flowers like they were his children. My grandparents owned one acre and every inch of it was cultivated. It was my favorite place to be as a child.
Several times each day, my grandfather would walk around his yard, checking out the progress of the vegetables or fruit trees and performing small tasks. My grandmother and I used to joke that he must know every blade of grass in his yard.
Now I find myself doing the same thing. I check the cherry tree to make sure the Eastern tent caterpillars haven’t shown up. I deadhead the petunias, and cheer on the veggies. Now I teach my granddaughters how to garden. It’s a satisfying life.