Farming, Victory!, Yarden

The Anti-Farmer

Who needs internet dating, all you really need is a giant garden bordered on one side by the road.

Boobs, sundress, tattoos… and they drop like flies neatly along my fence line.

I spent 10 hours in the garden yesterday, with the sunburn to show for it; and it was insanity. The women smile and wave, generally saying something nice about my garden or muttering about my mental stability under their breath.

The men stop.

The older retired set compliment me on being a good woman, and we chat for a while about how women don’t grow their own food anymore and how sad that is. He leaves with more compliments, referring to me as Sugar, Honey, or Sweetheart as he walks away. He always tells me he’ll be back when the tomatoes are ripe… and he always is. I have at least a dozen older neighbors that wave dollar bills over the fence every September.

The married men… and these are the worst. The big bad wolves of the neighborhood. I could tell you every single husband that cheats on his wife within a mile of my house. They leer at me. they make comments about my appearance. They start running daily during garden season. They come late afternoon to catch me rinsing off. I know these things because they tell me. Eww. There’s really nothing worse than being hit on by a guy, only to sit next to his wife at PTA meetings. Some men are just snakes…

The boyfriends… and these are the best. They talk about their girlfriend’s garden and ask me for garden advice or just tell me they think the garden is beautiful. They usually make the effort to stand my fence up a little straighter too. They’re the good guys, the helpers. Aw. There’s about one a week, so don’t get too excited.

The single men. The most challenging. Don’t get me wrong- I’ll be damn happy if my very own Prince Charming walks up to the fence to hand me a shiny 3 carat princess diamond. Yeah, sign me up- but it just isn’t that easy. These men range from absolutely repulsive to hot 23 year old half naked college student home for the summer. It’s either light hearted flirtation with a side of compliments- or outright whistling, followed by a request for my number.

With a nice exception yesterday.

I was roasting in the mid-morning sunshine. Spreading newspaper and straw mulch in between the rows to keep the weeds at bay. I’m determined to pull off this garden and work full time, and enjoy the summer with my daughter. I’m trying to cover as many bases as I can to make this as easy as possible. I heard someone at the fence and looked up.

Bald.

I laugh at myself because it’s the first thing I notice and acknowledge it silently in my head. I start walking over, smiling and melting at the same time.

Cute.

He’s cute, cute. I think I’ve seen him somewhere before. I’m not sure. Damn cute though- granted his shiny head is only helping him with me. What a weakness… good Lord.

C- Hey, this is quite a garden you have here. Is it a city project?

J- Nope, just mine.

C- Well it’s beautiful and I love the round paths, it’s very feminine.

J- I suppose that happens when there’s not a man demanding straight rows? I like it curvy.

C- It looks that way. Here’s my card, I just moved to town and I’d love to help sometime if you want. I’d like to know what makes an anti-farmer start farming.

J- An anti-farmer?

C- Clearly you’re a girlie girl, but with tattoos and 8 times an average vegetable garden?

J- Pretty much.

C- Call me if you want, I want to know more.

He smiled and jogged off and I laughed…

Perhaps I should make a poster and announce it to the masses. I’m not dating… which is precisely when they all come flying at you. I’m too happy not dating, though I’m definitely wound tightly. My life is a douche bag free zone. It’s complication free, stress free and happy. My biggest concern is a slug eating my cucumber plants. I have a new job I’m really excited about.

I have time with my daughter and my garden is going in quicker than ever before this year. I’m moving my own mountains, instead of wasting time getting my feelings hurt. I crave bad habits like everybody- but I’m finally at a point that the cost is too high for me to consider. I know that I can’t have what I really want in my life if I’m wasting time doing what I know doesn’t work.

Tempting… oh so tempting… but no.

I have tomatoes to plant. A fence to rebuild (ugh…) a yard sale to put together, a new job, etc… I don’t have time for a potential douche bag- so as sweet as they all are- and as easy as it is in the garden.

I’m throwing the number away. Sigh.

I know myself too well…. and he’s gonna look better and better while I’m doing that fence.

Farming, Love

Set my thoughts adrift…

She wears one of my favorite symbols…The bee… a sign of resurrection and natural potential…. The symbol of Kings… and the loving seal of Napoleon when he wrote letters to Josephine… She wears them with pride… they are beautiful tattoos…and I’m a huge admirer of them…

The incredible persona that is Jenni is who I’d like to fill this space with…she fills the roles necessary to make the world seem right… she’s a mother, a cook, a farmer, a lover, a beautiful temptress, a wildcat, both in the sack and out of it….she’s a tempting bit of Mormon-meets-Catholic yet in the wild ways all boys love to hear but really don’t want to know….beware of the claws… in a moment of passion they can drive through your shirt like it’s soft icecream on a midsummer’s day…

Jenni is a girl who sets my thoughts adrift… creative bits of small emails litter our respective inboxes with tidbits about the day’s ability to break a person down.  She and I share addictions….we are addicted to the opposite sex…however, our selection process is very different…  I look for life….vivacious…mezmerizing…..  She, on the other hand, looks for vice, for Mr. Now wmixed with a possibility of lasting a couple of weeks, but those boys aren’t strong enough to work with the tools God gave them to shape something that could be a beautiful relationship.

So what is it that Jenni craves?  My view is pretty simple…  She craves what all humans crave….appreciation.  Honestly at times she’s more than a little drama filled, yet I can’t take my eyes off the impending crash that is coming.  The boys that she chooses are more about her personal eye candy than what they will do for her.  Her real type of man?  Strong, clean lines, takes care of himself and shows pride in what he does.  He’s a little angry but he’s too mysterious to let you know what he’s angry about.  She deserves something different….she deserves something that shakes her foundation to the core and allows her to realize she’s got what many others don’t have…  she has vision of what she could be.  I’ve seen more stories about men who have treated this girl in such a dire wrong way, that I want to beat the fuck out of them and go nap to rest my weary arms then pummel them once more to show her she’s worth the effort to stand up for… 

If you say that she’s not craving appreciation, but she’s craving something less than that, I’ll let you know that anyone in this day and age can go out to any bar out there and hook up for the sake of hooking up.  Jenni is not some dime-a-dozen kinda girl.  They just don’t grow on trees like this one.  She’s got a lot of people from my blog reading her material and living vicariously through her dating adventures.  Me?  I’m on the opposite side of the fence…  She needs someone strong enough to hold her….restrain her from the ways that I’m so guilty of myself and allow her to relax and feel like she’s worth so much more than the moment of ecstasy in sex….she’s the kind of girl who wants the adventure that’s never been afforded to her.

She’s at the razor’s edge with me…  I’m a guy who will tell you how I feel and I’m sad on one hand and I’m excited on the other.  She’s got the drive that I love…always on the go with a fire and some drive in her….she dresses like I can appreciate the figure underneath the clothes…the men she has chosen?  Well they’ve stripped her dignity along with her boat, her finances, and her hope.  I want to  give her all of those things.  You should help her rebuild hope too… 

I am capable of being all things to nearly all women.  I’m never sure if I’m going  to hurt a girl or not, but one thing I have down pat…..she’s going to feel like she’s the most important woman in my amazing life.  That’s the kind of love that she deserves….someone soft…and if she complains a little about going to slowly or being a bit bored, be a man and give her the attention she seeks and then return back to the person who starts his night by asking her to come closer….leaning in ever-so-softly and telling her, she’s beautiful in a voice barely distinguishable to make the words hit the hardest impact on her soul….it’s her soul that needs the love and attention…it’s her mind and ego that deserves to be loved ever so gently. 

She works so hard to have so little.  She reminds me of how I am….a lot of heaven mixed with a smidgen of hell.  I love her attitude and she’s not my ideal Mormon version of purity, but she’s got something most girls don’t have and that’s a ton of heart.  She gives and wants to please and be accepted for the incredible person she is.  She makes me smile by simply reading her thoughts on paper and wishing that I could be there to wipe away her tears.

Sure she’s volatile…we all can be, but one thing’s for sure….with an effort that is strong, and determination that males mules green with envy, and a heart that needs nurturing,  she’s not on the highway to hell….she’s on her way to being loved for everything she brings to the table… 

Men, If you’ re going to date her, be strong enough to rein her in, on the flip side, be strong enough to love her with the same amount of attention you gave her before she ever laid a finger on you…date her, don’t bore her….respect her and let her understand where real strength comes from… 

Oceans between us….yet she’s just a thought away… a beautiful opportunity that makes me wanton….but I’m not weak…she makes me strong, she knows I’m sincere and  want only the absolute best for her and her little family.  Thoughts of who she is in a sun dress walking down a row of grapes in Sonoma…yes, the girl who no man could turn away easily…Living so far away from Vacationville, makes it difficult at best to ever know if we will ever meet, I do want more than anything for her heart to be free and find that man who makes her complete.  I search honestly for something much bigger than myself…yet I have everything I’ve always wanted….including the belle of the ball..yet I don’t feel it.  Jenni makes those thumps in my chest move a bit more upbeat and she’s got nothing to give other than herself…which is the finest gift any man could accept from her. 

The amazing girl sets my thoughts adrift… an incredible boat without a captain, driving through the night looking for safe harbor…toss out an anchor and set it hard in the sandy bottom and view the serenity around you…breathe for a change and accept no crew’s advances when you only deserve a captain…  For me, I’m always a pirate…yet for you…I would sail in the most gentle of waters, looking out for the integrity of more than just the beautiful moments that we are locked in while sailing….but to places I’ve never seen, doing things you’ve only wished you could do…  it’s what you deserve… 

Incredible girl, my heart is in my chest filled with hope…  that hope belongs to you…take it…

T.

Crafting, Farming, Food, Love, Victory!, Yarden

Can It

Sparkly pink nailed goodness is great for canning, oddly enough!

These acrylic wonders work miracles when it comes to blanching and peeling peaches.

Domesticity makes me inches off the ground happy, so the peach juice running down my arms and dripping off my elbows only makes me smile bigger.

The smell of jam boiling slowly on the stove, my favorite cherry print apron and hot canning jars in the dishwasher?

I’m in heaven. Sweet domestic bliss.

Canning is right up there with knitting. You start with the raw tools and it’s up to you what you put into it. The world is your oyster and you can have, be & do anything you wish.

Getting back to basics makes you value your skill base. It reminds you how capable you are.

Even if you fuck it up.

I had an entire batch of huckleberry jam fail last year…. so I changed the labels to say “Dessert Sauce”. Easy… and everybody loved it.

Because the reason I can and the reason I garden? Is to love the people who treasure me with the gifts I can make them from my heart. Simple homemade gifts of love.

Slicing vanilla beans in half and smiling at the tiny seeds bubbling in and around the soft sweet peaches I diced in cubes.

Foodie porn, in my kitchen, in heels even.

Baking, canning and smiling it all better.

One jar at a time.

Canning, Farming, Food, Happiness, Love, Truth, Victory!, Yarden

Victory Yarden

My garden, aka The Yarden was overwhelmingly huge this year. Nearly an acre- and completely redesigned this year. With a freaking rake. I was determined, heartbroken and lost. Definitely depressed. Beyond depressed.

My mom brought her tractor over and we tilled the whole damn thing up. Go big or go home, organic farmer style. Like a blank slate… that had to be raked and shaped into the sexy round garden of my dreams. Fuck straight lines, fuck that rotten ex of mine and fuck everyone who told me I couldn’t do it.

I did it, God Damn IT…

Ugh. Wayyyyyyyy too well. I stood in my garden on my birthday in July and it hit me… What on earth could I possibly have been thinking. WTF. If I wasn’t out there at least 4 hours a day, it went crazy… and at a certain point, I didn’t care anymore. Without the sexual tension from the Shark and my iPod it would have been a miserable failure. Oh… and…

My ego.

Because the stupid boat stealing asshole got right in my face and told me I’d never be able to do it without him… and I would have died trying before I let him be right about that. I was nothing but a pain in his ass for the last year of our relationship. Admittedly. I was awful. However… he deserved nothing more than that. Having him completely out of my life is like the ultimate second chance.

Hearing horror stories about how his child is acting now- seeing him in all his scrawny, grey, & bitter glory? It’s all just icing on my ego cake.

He was wrong. I grew 3,200 lbs of vegetables (so far, I still have more to weigh) this year in my garden. I’ve been fine alone… and pretty damn happy with the new men in my life. Mr. Favorite is 19 years younger than him. Ha ha ha ha… and on a completely petty level…I hope it burns his ass when he sees us together at some point. I have a new job I love, a great relationship with my family and wonderful close friends. Life is bliss.

Even better? I was right. He’s content to live in a car. He’s happy bailing on his son to be lazy. He’s old. Lazy. Stupid…. and all washed up before he ever began. He’s a failure- and we were the best part of his life. I hope he kicks him self every day for the rest of his life.

Because like I kicked him out of our lives, my garden kicked his ass. It unfortunately kicked mine as well in the process, and I learned a valuable lesson. I have a huge ego…and it killed me this summer. My acre of healthy vegetables laid claim to my soul this summer and I hated it. The market was a failure and I am literally swimming in veggies. Canning like a pioneer. Spending every spare moment I have, dealing with the biomass I created out of pure stubborn pride.

I really showed him…

🙂

Canning, Farming, Food, work, Yarden

Tomato Hoarder

Seriously. My ego has gotten me in more trouble than I can shake a stick at. One of the last arguments with the dirty boat stealing asshole went something like this:

DBSA- What do you think you’re going to do? You’ll never be able to do it without me.

J- Hmm. You don’t think so, huh? Watch me.

Unfortunately we were talking about the garden. I expanded it, tilled all the rows in and remade/reshaped the entire thing. Fuck that guy, not only would I do it bigger, and completely erase anything he’d done in my garden- I’d do it alone.

I really showed him. Ugh. I was a slave to the damn garden all summer and now the fall fun has only just begun… I have thousands of tomatoes yet to ripen. I’m not exaggerating either. Literally thousands. 180 very healthy plants.

It’s a bit epic- to be completely honest…and a bit of an eye opener. I’ll never do it again. It’s just a ridiculous amount of garden…hell… it’s why we call it the Yarden. With a week of hot weather, and Th, Fr & Sat off- I’m going to be a canning slave. Marinara, salsa, pickled beets, more jam, pears, etc….

I’ve learned my lesson. I admit to being a tomato hoarder and I will never do it again.

I hope.

🙂