Monday, April 20, 2015


Yes Spring is here folks, for a lot of us anyway. Oh the signs. The smell of liniment on rebelling muscles. Fresh air full of pollen that induces rapid fire sneezing.  Those surprise pains from unused muscles and arthritic joints that scream from the unaccustomed abuse.

Don't forget, spiders in the bathtub,which are as reliable as robins foretelling the season, and those new born wasps dive bombing you as they work on flight control. Ah yes, Spring.

Can you believe Positive Patti has penned those words? Yes I did and do think these thoughts each year for about a week or so. Each year the snark period lasts a bit longer but thankfully it does go away and PP returns, battered but happy.

Pretty sure it is my advancing age for now days when I look outside as Spring arrives, I still see the beauty as the world greens up but I also see the debris and destruction that Winter has left behind and know it is up to me to restore order. Oh if only flowers grew with the abandon and vigor of weeds.

I swear my Henbit resumes growing just seconds after I have cut its head off with the lawnmower. My lawn turns almost solid lavender in the Spring. Pretty but invasive. It also sprawls vigorously into my flower beds and must be hand pulled.

Henbit is an edible plant, I have just never found a good recipe for it and raw it has the bite of fresh kale. Hum, wonder if I could make Henbit chips?

And that is the truth. 

When I bought my property I moaned that it was only an acre. Come Spring I moan that it is a bleeping acre.

First comes the sore, winter softened muscles along with stiff, achy arthritic joints. Knowing the pain is temporary helps a little.

Then as inevitable as squirrels eating bird seed, I will tweak my back lifting something heavy awkwardly which will lay me up for 3 days (just completed that).  Luckily, those 3 days as usual coincided with Spring rains that keep me inside anyway. Forced R & R that might be God's way of making me take a break.

And I finally relearn that cloudy days can still cook the skin and that while sunscreen is a dirt magnet, it does work and is necessary. Big hats don't cover everything.

Then like magic after days of misery, the pains ease and I feel a bit of strength return. Spring becomes once more a period of renewal--for Nature and me.

The first days of Spring are a yearly ritual that I wish I could bypass and magically land at the end of the second week with the pain bypassed. Just haven't figured out how to do that yet. Each year I know what will happen, I grumble about it,  then  get past it and yes, I am almost there.

This book might be a good investment for next year. Too late this year for me. 
As  the pains ease, a smile of pleasure creases my face as I enjoy the fruits of my labors. Lying in my hammock and smelling the sweetness of  newly-mown grass is hard to beat. I am able to ignore and put off for later those beds that are still over run.  Much work left to do but I am retired and have the time. No need to do it all in one day.  I just peck away at it.

When the day comes that Spring chores are too much for me, I will sprinkle weed killer on everything that isn't grass and just ride my mower into the sunset over what is left that resembles grass while sipping an iced coffee. There is always a plan B.

Does Spring beat you up in the beginning or do you enjoy the rebirth
pain free?


  1. Considering that I just spent two days rubbing Aspercreme on my sore leg muscles, I think it is safe to say that I totally agree with you! I planted blueberries, grapes, tomatoes, and peppers. Bending over and squatting to pull weeds is what did me in though, and I am still not through with an oh so tiny 8x8 square foot garden bed. I'm such a whiner!

  2. Oh yes, you have the beautiful dream hammock where you can sway away in reverie. My dang grass needs mowing too. I wonder where the ideal lies.

  3. Too cold here still for our grass to need mowing, although it's greening up - contrasting nicely with the brown trails from the moles/voles/mice tunneling across the top of it under the snow.
    And since the weeds aren't out in full force yet, only the top half of me aches from raking out the leaves that keep reappearing even though the trees have been bald since October.
    Maybe a week more and I can enjoy my arthritic hip (and herniated disc) after sorting out the flower garden.

  4. Ha! I exercise every day and still, when I dug in the garden to prepare my plot for planting, I could barely get out of bed the next day. The screaming hamstrings from all that bending over and sore arms from wresting buttercup and dandelions out of the ground. But yesterday I was actually able to plant some vegetables in there! Yay! :-)

  5. OMG...Yes!!I'm doing things so differently now. I honestly think I need some help. Oooh and you forgot the stick & stink of tic spray.

  6. Before you lift anything, even a peanut, look up, head up spine goes straight and you don't tweek your back.

  7. Just happened on your blog and enjoyed reading it. I'm not from Arkansas but my husband lived with his grandparents and graduated from Heber Springs High School so we feel a wonderful connection. Will follow your postings!

  8. I'm actually pretty good with it. More this year than usual. I'll be happy to be rid of the dry, flaky, itchy winter skin.

    We're going around in winter hats today looking at the landscapes we want to alter, perennials we need to move, the shrubs that were destroyed by the snow drifts and wind. It's a good break from the work we did yesterday and we're expecting rain to water our newly planted shrubs.

    Ah, Cape Cod spring.

    Hang in there, Patti!

  9. Awww yes, the sound of creaky joints in the spring.....I so know the name of that song.

  10. A perfect description of the first days of spring and our aging bodies. We really have to learn how to ease into this season!

  11. I love spring but live in a townhouse where all of the gardening is done for us. My wife won't garden until the world is rid of bugs, which is highly unlikely.

  12. I like to tell myself "this year I will take it little by little" and then I try to get everything shipshape in one day. It will be interesting to see how different things will be this year. There yard should not be a bleak looking when I return in May instead of at the beginning of April. On the other hand, There's that whole month gone --you know, the one I was going to spread all the work over-- so there may be time pressures.

  13. I just tried to leave a comment, but don't think it went through. Will check later!

  14. I like your snarkyness!
    Before I might have looked at the book, not now that I'm a member of THE book group. They have a hard & fast rule: No Damn Self Help Books. I'm love'n it!

  15. Terri,
    Yes,I am with you on the leaning and squatting. I don't think we are meant to bend that way:))

    It might help to have a young muscular house guest to do that kind of work.
    My hammock is my saving grace.

    Well at least you are only half bad at the moment. That other half will get its turn all to soon.

    I feel your pain. The tricky part is there is no pain when you are working. It waits for you to try to get out of bed the next day. Not fair.

    Luckily no ticks here but I have yet to find a sunscreen that wasn't nasty smelling.

    I took your advice to heart. I had to pick up 10 bags of mulch today (bags were wet and heavy) and when my store helper failed to appear, I tried your method and did it myself. So far so good. Thanks.

    Journeyin' Lady,
    Thank you so much for stopping by and commenting. So glad you will be following. I took my Master Gardener course in Heber Springs--a really nice town.

    Thanks, I'm trying to. If you survived the fencing, you should have no problem with some shrubs.

    Linda W.
    Sadly it really is a familiar refrain. Guess we both will make it.

    Will roger get to plant a garden this year? I know he enjoys it and the eating is always good.

    Sometimes I envy you townhouse sorts, especially this time of year. When the pains ease however, I do love getting my hands dirty. And nope, bugs are here to stay.

    You are setting your schedule back this year aren't you? If you are like me, you intend to go easy then you get going and hate to stop. Good luck.

    That one came through all right. Hope no one else is having problems.

    Thank you so much for stopping by and for the kind blessing.

    I usually steer clear also but anything that would spare me this annual initiation would be welcome. Maybe I'll try the book next year.

  16. Love this sweet Patti made me laugh out loud... "When the day comes that Spring chores are too much for me, I will sprinkle weed killer on everything that isn't grass and just ride my mower into the sunset over what is left that resembles grass while sipping an iced coffee. There is always a plan B."

    I really enjoy spring, it is summer that gets to me. Having to mow in the heat and rake leaves in the fall is what really wears on me.

    We have some of those wasps, they have somehow managed to nest in the porch light. I need to have my sun see if he can get them to move their choice of living space.

    Don't over-do keep chipping away at it and enjoying that hammock. We are about the same age and I chip away at it too. But we do get it done, don't we?

    Big hugs for you and give the sweeties nose kisses for me.

  17. This is the best ode to mud season I've seen in a long time. I'm now inspired to go out and dig in the dirt!

  18. The yard gets bigger every year. Thank goodness the fruit trees know what to do. The vegetable beds, not so much. They wait for the seeds. We have a neighbor chicken who, we think, has added nitrogen to the soil and removed many of the newly planted seeds.

    A little at a time. Or a teenage grandson.

  19. Dear Patti,
    Oh dear, you have made me laugh and sigh at the same time (again!). Yes, when you are getting older, gardening is rewarding and taxing at the same time, isn't it?
    I wish you lots of time in that hammock!
    Best wishes from The Wetlands (in the Netherlands),

    Renée (from Rays of Light)

  20. My property is all sagebrush and I've just left it that way for now. Every time I think about landscaping, my back hurts and I rethink.

    I'll have to do it at some point, I guess.

  21. Maggie,
    Glad you got a chuckle.
    Those baby wasps are annoying aren't they? Have never been stung but they make you duck a lot.

    Thanks so much for the cool compliment. Don't forget the liniment.

    Linda M.
    Ah yes, the teenage work force. They are the best and so glad you have one on call.

    Thank you so much for stopping by again. I keep trying to navigate Google + but I am not having much success. I finally made it to your post but can't leave a comment.

    You are smart. When I moved here, it was a blank canvas. It was just mow and rest. Probably should have left it that way but I got tree and flower bed happy. Of course then I was 10 years younger.

  22. Patti, I hate to say it but you forgot to mention the wood ticks.....

  23. I would love to send you a photo of the 3 ' of snow still in my yard, Patti! If spring ever arrives, I'll be greeting it with open arms. I did order some perennial seeds, so I'm dreaming. Get Arnica - it's the best cure for sore muscles.

  24. Good afternoon, been a while since I've dropped by. At the moment I am getting over shingles, and my skin on the right side around waist band and rib cage is so sore. Feels like a combination of a really bad sunburn/ pulled muscles with aching and someone trying to stick me with something sharp. I started popping out with them on Easter. Went to doctor next day, they gave me some kind of capsule to take for five days. They are dried up, but the skin hurts more now then when I was coming down with them. Then we are still trying to get my Mother's small estate taken care of. It will be a year ago this coming May 29th that she died as a result of a car accident. She was a passenger and that's the side that got hit. She lived for two days, in a coma. Just a big mess. Here today it's chilly and raining. I wish I had a little housekeeper to come in and cook and clean for me today. Best I can do is get the car out and run through someplace that serves food. Take care and have a great Saturday night and a lovely Sunday.

  25. Spring to you is like Fall to me... I LOVE LOVE LOVE Fall---but oh how much work there is when the leaves start falling.. BUT--overall, like Spring and the weeds, it's a favorite season...

    Winter is usually when I get my 'respite time' --but since I had knee surgery this winter, it didn't end up being a joyful time to just REST.... ha..

    Summer is my least favorite season simply because I do not like HOT and HUMID weather...

    Hang in there... How 'bout hiring a young man/teen to do your mowing for you????


  26. TB,
    Luckily, where I am now, there are no ticks. Such a relief after tick filled Florida.Sorry you have to deal with those nasty buggers.

    You are like Spring the way I am about Winter. I do use Arnica on my muscle pains, but it does nothing for the achy, arthritic joints. Just grin and bear it.

    Aww, I am so sorry about the shingles. I have been there and it is as bad as people say. Hope you are soon all the way better. It took me about 3 weeks.
    So sorry also about your Mom. What a terrible accident. It has reminded me to do something about my small estate so my kin will not have a lot of problems. Be well soon lady.

    Of course you do have that live in gardener to help out:)) I don't need someone to mow as that is still a pleasure for me but I may have to hire out the weeding. I just hate to give in but it would be smart to.

  27. Laughing, while reading your post, hurts.

  28. I loved spring in Chicago, but then again I've been away from it for 8 years now so I think I'm forgetting the aching muscles part. I didn't know that was called Henbit. I recognize it though. We had it too!

  29. I am spoiled because I hire help now. I can"t do garden stuff due to allergies of various types.
    But I love to see the rebirth and I try to freshen things up.

  30. I could have written this post! Were you watching me from afar? My back was a bit more than three days, maybe I should invest in that book. At the rate I read, next spring should be upon us.