Thursday, June 28, 2018

Summer in the Garden

Many years ago, we planted several thousand Noble fir and Douglas fir trees with the intention of selling Christmas trees.  The thing we didn't factor in was that we have been spending winters at our Georgia house and wouldn't be here to actually sell the trees when they were big enough.  To make matters worse, we planted a couple of thousand trees in pots, and put three rows of them inside the garden fence.
The trees continued to grow, and I continued to ignore them as I had plenty of garden space.  However, they had finally gotten tall enough to seriously shade the raspberries, and about half of the garden.  So Ron has been removing them with the trackhoe.
The fence is gone, the trees are gone, but we still have a major job ahead cleaning out all the roots and parts and pieces of the pots we planted them in.  By next spring, we should have reclaimed garden area.  For now, we've eliminated some serious rabbit and slug habitat, and the raspberries are already looking better.
My jam making season begins!
The peas that I planted in the raised bed with a chicken wire fence to keep out the bunnies are doing great.
So is the cabbage that's inside the fence in the raised bed.
We're enjoying new potatoes nearly every day.
We should have lots of zucchini soon.
and beets are nearly ready to thin and harvest.
You can see the netting over the strawberries - it doesn't totally keep the bunnies and birds out, but it does allow me to get a few strawberries too.  Sometimes I find it all balled up at the end of the garden, so I know something got tangled up in it.  I nearly get myself enmeshed if I'm not careful.
We had a family day last weekend, and the weather cooperated so Grandpa was able to give thrill rides to the kiddos and I was able to swim with them for the first time this year.
It was a perfect day - not too hot, not too cold.  Just right for enjoying family time outdoors.
We enjoyed a full day, ending with the kids making smores, 
And we watched the Mariners win, so we all had a good day.

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Trinity Hot Springs Trip

Our grandson, Jesse, is a music student at EWU in Cheney, WA, and has been performing in a series of concerts.  We decided to go to his last concert at Sutton Park on Friday.  Both Ron and I have been working pretty hard for the past month, so we decided to make a mini-vacation out of the trip across the state.
First stop:
There are hundreds of hot springs in Idaho - but many are located way up in the mountains with marginal (some 4-wheel drive) roads, and many are primitive with no place to stay, or are owned by corporations and not open to the public. Trinity/Paradise Hot Springs is a club with lodge rooms and cabins and camping spaces for rent as well as a beautiful large pool.  
The water is lovely - about 100 degrees in the large part of the pool, with areas of much hotter water where the water enters the pool.  I was able to swim laps in the main pool, and we soaked in the hotter pools too.  The air temperature was around 95 degrees, but there was a variety of chairs in both sunny and shaded areas, so it was very pleasant - not too hot, not too cool - just perfect!
The lodge room was pretty basic ($100 per night) - clean, but small with two double beds and an attic feel to it.  There was one small window, a very small bathroom with shower but no tub, and no TV.  It wasn't light enough for reading, and the stairs to the guest rooms are steep and scary. I would recommend renting the cabin instead of the rooms in the lodge. However, we didn't spend much time in the room as the area around the pool was very comfortable and open 24 hours a day.  There is no restaurant, but they will rent a large kitchen for $15.  Lots of space for RV 's and tents, but we had the pool pretty much to ourselves most of the time.  According to their web site the water is the most ancient on earth, and is completely untreated and unfiltered.  It was one of the nicest hot springs of the many, many, that we have visited over the years. 
The drive from I-84 at Mountain Home to the spring is about 35 beautiful scenic miles on mostly good roads in spite of a detour of about 5 miles.  Surprisingly, there were thousands of camp sites and both tenters and RV campers, many vacation homes, and boat ramps all along the water.  However, there were only two eating establishments that we saw:  a small cafe, and a bar/tavern, so it's advisable to bring your own food if you go. 
Second stop:  Moscow Idaho - where I was born and the farm where I lived for the first 8 years of my life.
The house is long gone, but the barn where we jumped from the hayloft into the hay when we were kids is still standing. There is something about that area that still tugs at my heartstrings even though I only lived there as a child.
3rd stop:  Sutton Park in Cheney where we met Jesse, his other grandparents, and my son and daughter-in-law to enjoy an afternoon in the sun listening to the amazingly talented student musicians of EWU perform.
This morning my beautiful daughter-in-law, Tina, gave me a raindrop massage - It was unlike any massage I have ever had - if you ever get a chance to have one, jump on it!  The combination of massage techniques and essential oils was the most relaxing and rejuvenating experience ever!
We stopped for a quick visit to our granddaughter, Sara, and our two cute and cuddly great grandchildren on our way home.
Then we came home to a nicely hydrated garden - so it rained enough in our absence to do my daily watering for me.
Back to the grind tomorrow!