A day in the garden…Saturday.

We started the day by visiting a couple of nurseries.
This rose was perfect. (our son is a bush fire fighter)

Shortly after we returned home we received visitors into the garden
but they decided to go next door when they saw we were busy. 😉

I actually bought two Fire Fighter Red roses.
The other one we’ll give to our son.

We also bought this white climbing rose called Iceberg.

I took a few pics of new blooms and garden features.


Covid has slowed up a garden arch order from Western Australia. It could be months before it’s delivered so we bought a cheap one so we could continue our garden plans.

More pics.


We took a rest at the end of the path to take more pics and imagine what else we could do.

I then checked if the gnomes were home…

…and if Mitzi was still hanging around.

Thanks for stopping by.
We hope to have another day in the garden soon.

Archived in: I’m in the Garden by Chrissy for Riverside Peace

Stinky

Thirteen-year-old Sarah stood in the kitchen doorway; arms firmly folded. Defiance kindled her annoyance. Tension grew as she watched her mother fill the dishwasher. ‘I’m not going,’ Sarah declared. ‘Give me one good reason why I should.’

‘It’s only going to be a month. Please Sarah; you know your father needs this cruise to help with his recovery.’

‘But Aunt Carla … stinks.’ She knew it wasn’t a nice thing to say, but it was true. Everyone knew it.

Sarah remembered their visit to her Aunt Carla’s at Christmas. She lived in a sun-bleached clapboard house in an old neighbourhood. With no car, she walked once a week to the store and post office. Her only apparent regular visitor was a nurse every Wednesday. Sarah recalled the embarrassment she felt when they took her smelly aunt to the Christmas service.

Her mother’s voice drew her back to the present. ‘I know how you feel about your Aunt Carla, but she’s close to school. You won’t be with her all day every day. Even church is nearby and you can phone Pastor Jim for transport to youth group.’

Sarah unfolded her arms and opened her mouth to respond, stopping short at the sight of her father staggering in from the yard. His mouth drooped on one side and spittle hung in mid-air about two inches from his bristly chin. She turned and ran to her room, throwing herself onto her bed. Her mother followed.

‘You will go, Sarah. The doctor said it will take time and this cruise will help. He’s fortunate the stroke didn’t affect his walking.’

‘Okay, I’ll go to Aunt Carla’s.’

Sarah ate her breakfast in silence. She ignored her aunt sitting opposite. The kitchen smelled musty and mingled with mothballs, which lingered in the air throughout the house. Neither had spoken much since Sarah had arrived three days earlier. In the evenings, the only sound heard was the tinkling of silverware against old dinner plates while they ate their evening meals. The spacious sunroom, consisting of a large comfortable day bed, a closet and an antique table, was where she would stay … out of Aunt Carla’s way.

‘Would you like something special for tea tonight? I can make hamburgers and chocolate chip cookies, your father’s favourites.’

The packet macaroni and frozen pizzas her aunt had prepared the previous night, invaded Sarah’s already depressing thoughts. ‘That’s okay, whatever you want.’

Aunt Carla rose to her feet and wheezed heavily; her foul breath caused Sarah to cringe. The older woman took her breakfast plate to the sink and stood with her back to her niece.

Sarah felt a pang of unexpected guilt. She finished her breakfast and hurried to collect her things for school. Her aunt was still at the sink when Sarah passed the kitchen on her way out. She heard her aunt sniffle and watched as she removed a tissue from her pocket. Leaving the room noiselessly, Sarah step outside and closed the door.

‘Sarah, what’s ya doin’ at Stinky’s?’ She looked up to see a face disappear back through the window of a passing school bus.

Keeping her eyes downward, Sarah began walking in the direction of school. She quickened her step and almost immediately bumped into someone approaching from the opposite direction. Sarah quickly apologized and knelt to pick up the items the woman had dropped. Sarah lifted her head and realized this woman was a community nurse. ‘Oh, you must be going to see my aunt.’

‘Yes, I’m Jenny and you must be Sarah. Carla’s been so excited about you coming to stay. You know, I overheard that boy. I’m sorry. It must be hard to hear people say such nasty things about your aunt. They just don’t understand that some forms of terminal lung disease cause the body to produce odour from dying cells.’

‘What? Oh…yeah. I better get to school.’

Sarah’s heart pounded and her breathing accelerated, but it had nothing to do with her vigorous walking. She began to cry thinking about the terrible things she had said and thought about her aunt.

Oh God, I’m so selfish. Help me to be a friend to Aunt Carla. Please look after Daddy and make him well.  I think you have a few things to teach me while I’m here. Help me learn…

© Chrissy Siggee

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Archived in
Younger Teens by Chrissy at Riverside Peace

 

Garden Additions

Norm is connecting with the garden and adding his imagination and creations.

I’ve read that dark fences do not make gardens look smaller but rather enhance the garden. I think they’re right.

Do you see the additional Australian baby animals?

A view from the garden seat.

and a view from the bottom of the steps.

Last week we created a strawberry tower together and added a few local finds to the garden.

Norm is getting involved with his own additions.

It’s all looking good.

Archived in:

I’m in the Garden by Chrissy for Riverside Peace

Haunting Wails and the Seashell

Multi-coloured seashells lined the shelf in Sophie’s spare room. They had always fascinated her nine-year-old granddaughter, Emma. Each shell had its own special story. Today, Emma had asked to hear about the big shiny spotted one, which twisted and curled to a little holey point.

Emma carefully lifted the shell from the shelf and sat on the bed as Sophie entered from the kitchen, wiping her wet hands on her apron. She smiled down at her granddaughter holding the shell gently in her lap. ‘I suppose you want to know about this very special seashell.’

‘Where did you find it, Nanna? It’s so pretty.’

‘It is pretty—as pretty as the beach I found it on. But this shell has a sad story to tell. The memory will live forever in here.’ Sophie placed her hand over her heart before continuing.

‘Poppa and I were visiting a place far from here on the west coast for a holiday back in 1992. It was our holiday of a lifetime—just after your mother finished college. It was a summer. We were staying at a resort village and Poppa and I spent the evenings walking along the cooling sand. On the third evening there was a full moon and we were about to head back up the beach to our bungalow when we heard a pitiful moaning. It seemed like it was coming from the ocean. The sound lingered like a haunting wail that echoed. I have to admit, I was afraid. I’m not one to believe in ghosts, but that night I would have believed anything.’

‘Oh, Nanna, that must have been soooo scary. What did you and Poppa do? What was it?’

Sophie traced the contour of the twisted shell to the point, holding her finger in mid-air for a moment before continuing. ‘Well at first we just stood there trying to work out what it was. Some of the resort staff came running down onto the beach yelling, ‘Save them! Save them!’ It was then that we realized there were black mounds rolling in the surf. They looked like huge boulders. Some were closer to us on the wet sand; water lapping around them from the incoming tide. Some of the people started running into the waves. Poppa grabbed my hand. The boulders were actually whales. Some had already beached themselves—others splashed about a little offshore where waves crashed around them.’

Tears ran down her cheeks as she recalled the events. ‘People were trying to persuade them back by yelling at them. Others just stood, staring, as one by one they beached themselves. It was an awful sight.’

‘Did they go back into the water?’ Emma asked, her eyes reflecting her anguish.

‘Unfortunately, most of them didn’t. I guess its part of nature. We never did find out why those whales beached themselves. We tried to help by keeping the whales wet. We even tried to encourage them back into the water.’ Sophie shook her head. ‘Four days later the beach was covered in dead and dying whales—fifteen in all. I remember I sat in the shallow water beside a mother and her calf and wept for them. Poppa and I took turns taking short naps and taking time out for meals provided by the resort’s kitchen. We continued our vigil for four days—the remainder of our holiday. We’ve always considered it a small sacrifice. We managed to get three whales back out into deeper water—only three, but we were relieved we were able to help in a small way.’

‘Oh, Nanna, this is the saddest story of all. But, where did you find the shell?’

Sophie picked up the shell and blew into the small hole at the point. It made a howling sound, like the wind. She handed it back to Emma so she could have a blow, and continued her story.

‘About mid-morning on the last day, men with hoists came and loaded the dead whales onto the back of trucks to take them away—for burial. I suppose we were too exhausted to ask where. When they lifted the calf beside me, I noticed something lodged in the wet sand. Poppa used his hands to dig it out and held it up to look at it more closely. One of the helpers from the night before took it from Poppa’s hands and washed it in the seawater. He lifted it to his lips and blew it, long and loud. It sounded almost like the mournful cry we had heard the evening before. The man handed it to me and walked away, back up the beach to the resort where he worked. I’ll never forget those whales—or the beach.’

Emma blew into the shell. The haunting wail lingered like the memories on the shelf. Sophie sat beside her in silence for a few minutes.  Emma traced her finger around the shell before placing it into Sophie’s hand. She too, traced her finger to the point then placed it back in its place on the shelf.

© Chrissy Siggee

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

Archived in
Children’s Corner at Riverside Peace

Vegetable garden take over.

Retirement finally. First week at home and the garden plots became a reality.

It’s an amazing transformation.

The broad beans were left in their boxes so as not to disturb the roots.

I’ll be having a serving of my favourite green vegetables soon.

Seedlings in the centre garden are starting well.

The transplanted spinach and lettuce have been sampled already this past week.

The brussel sprouts continue to thrive in their box and potatoes are growing well too.

 

Archived in:

I’m in the Garden by Chrissy for Riverside Peace