Friday, March 29, 2013

Day 2

March 28, 2013

Today, I raked leaves.

I raked and raked and raked.

With 2 mature oak trees, it's a never ending job. But, it does make for lots of free mulch. I filled most of the driveway, around the lamp post and around the bed out back.

There are several reasons I rake these leaves. It uncovers the lawn so it can actually grow. It picks up all the trash that finds it's way into the yard and then there's the free mulch benefit. It also clears all the kindling from the lawn so we can stow it in the brush pile until needed.

Thank you Lord for the energy and stamina it took and for such a beautiful day :)


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Day One

March 27, 2013

My journey starts at the curb.

Not only should this please the neighbors, but it is the first thing we see when we arrive home. I have a neglected bed of roses along the left side of the driveway. I used to have 12 rose bushes that I acquired and purchased over the years. Most of them I rescued from a friend who did not want to care for them. They were in a soggy, over watered bed at her house. Unfortunately, their new home is the most inconvenient place to water on my property. Many of them have died, the mulch overgrown and decayed. It is difficult to see where the bed stops and the weedy lawn begins.

So, I pruned the remaining bushes back, pulled out the weeds and freshened up the mulch with oak leaves. The oak leaves are free and I have an unending supply. A neighbor gave me these pieces of cement garden border a few weeks ago. So far, I have spent nothing but about an hour’s work. There are only 4 roses left so I will need to plant the rest of the bed with something to help sustain my family.

The mail arrived with a notice from our local utility company. We have new watering restrictions and can only water one day a week. This is an added inconvenience, but does not make it impossible. I have a rain barrel, but it is out back. I will just have to carry water around for now.

So, what to plant in the bed? I have a large pot with Rosemary and Lavender growing in it. They are quite large and would do nicely in that location. This bed receives morning sun instead of afternoon, but if I plant them towards the road they should receive the same amount. This will be a nice start. Perhaps I can plant more flowering hers to finish it off. I’ll see what is in my seed stash.

I also repaired and straightened our mailbox and post lamp. Both items had encounters with vehicles and were tilted and broken. I still need to do a bit of work on them, so pictures will come later.

We thank you Lord, for such a successful start. Thank you for beautiful weather, energy and plentiful resources. Please continue to bless my endeavor. Amen.


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Suburban Neglect to Homestead

March 27, 2013

Welcome! You are invited to follow along as I take control of my little piece of the planet. Since I will now be working from home for the foreseeable future, I need my home and yard to work for us too. People on the spectrum need order, peace and nutritious food.

Much of our corner lot is a collection of misplaced plants, unfinished projects and honestly……..just plan neglect. I hope to conquer our jungle and turn it into something that nourishes my family spiritually and physically.

I also need to accomplish this for next to nothing. I have already acquired so many items for my chickens and gardens that I know it can be done. I plan to work hard, barter, yard sale and Craig’s List to get the job done.

But first, I lift this endeavor up to you Lord:

Father God, thank you for entrusting me with this beautiful piece of your creation. Thank you for spreading oaks to shade and climb. I love the size and location, the lush plants and flowers. Please forgive us for not being the stewards that reflect our love for You. We love You Lord.

Beginning today, help me to shape this into the nurturing environment I crave. Give me the strength, endurance and resources I need. It is the desire of my heart that this plan is your will, not mine.

In Jesus name I pray,


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Tears and Hot Chocolate

March 6, 2013

My boy is growing so much this year, and in so many ways.

When we came home from school today, Kyle immediately grabbed the leash and announced that he was taking Percy for a walk. When we got this dog, it was difficult for him to handle all the energy a 10 week old puppy can dish out. He would try to play with him, get scratched or nipped, then stomp off to his room to read a book or something.

Now here he was offering to spend time with the dog, go outside and actually walk down the street without being prompted. I do suspect he was trying to avoid dealing with the news I had given him on the ride home.

Earlier that day, I went into our den to get the vacuum cleaner. We keep our pet gerbil, Goldie there on Kyle’s desk. Whenever I am in there, I take a peek to make sure all is well. Normally, I tap the cage door and she peeks out at me. I usually give her a pumpkin seed or one of the unidentified pellets from her seed mixture. She particularly liked the pinkish ones.

Today it was very quiet in there, so I tapped the cage door. I could see her curled up in the shred at the bottom of her cage. She didn’t move so I tapped again. Nothing. She was gone.

I picked Kyle up right after school. I wanted him to have plenty of time in the evening to shed tears and say his goodbyes. There would still be homework and evening chores, so it would be better if he met with his friends another day.

I told him in the car while we were still in the school parking lot. Even though she was almost 5 years old, he blamed himself for not taking better care of her. Now he was taking this walk before he chose to go see her.

He was only gone about ten minutes. I was surprised and asked if everything had gone ok. He said it did, but he decided to turn around before he reached the end of the road. “There was a girl walking in front of me. She kept turning around and staring at me. I think she thought I was following her and I was freaking her out. So, I turned around early.”

Something people with Asperger’s have difficulty with is reading social clues. Especially, non-verbal ones. The fact that he noticed that he was making her nervous, even though she didn’t say anything to him is a huge step forward for him.

So, now it was time to take care of Goldie. He approved of the box I found, but insisted on putting clean bedding in it for her. “That’s to apologize to her for not taking better care of her” he said. I chose a place in the garden behind the gardenia. He liked the idea that the bush will have white flowers soon. I had dug the hole already when he came out with the box. Then he suddenly decided she needed a toilet paper tube in there with her and ran back inside.

You see, empty toilet paper tubes were the only chew toy Goldie enjoyed. We spent more money on that silly little rodent than I ever dreamed I would. But she ignored every chew block, biscuit and stick we got her. Finally, one of us stuck an empty toilet paper tube in there for her to crawl through. She promptly chewed it to bits! From then on, we couldn’t use tp fast enough for her. Sometimes I would even bring one home for work.

Kyle was back outside in a few moments and gently put the box in the hole. He took the shovel from my hands and covered the hole with soft dirt. He gave it a couple pats and looked at me. I raked the mulch over and gave him a hug. Then we walked inside.

In the kitchen, we made hot chocolate. We whipped some cream, heated the milk and stirred in the chocolate. As we sipped together, we talked of hot chocolate and how to make the best cup. No more was said of the little golden ball of fur that had gone on without us.

Dear Lord, thank you for my wonderful son. I pray he will continue to grow strong, wise and to be a man chasing after your heart. Amen