17 June 2008

Use your imagination

Because I don't know where the batteries are for the camera.

Here's the scene; a messy living room, small but lovingly decorated. All the furniture is Hand-me-down Chic, but none of it needs to be thrown out. A family lives here, you can tell by the brightly colored plastic toys in the corners the high chair strapped to a chair, the Exersaucer that is the middle of the floor for you to trip over, because there is nowhere else for it to be.

Crashed on the couch, wearied after a six month checkup and a frenzied effort to get Daddy out the door on time for work, is a pretty little red-headed baby, and her frazzled looking mother. The mother looks longingly at her knitting, which she hasn't touched since Friday, and looks realistically at the apartment (an utter disaster). You can see the thoughts on her face -- she could stay here all day, fighting the baby for time to clean, or she could cut loose, head over to her own mother's house, and let someone help her for a change...yeah, that sounds good...

She brings along two bags of laundry, because that's how she is.

Once the laundry is up and running (swirling), three generations of women head off to the local farmstand-with-garden store; one is an accomplished gardener, one wants a few plants in containers so she can make hotpepper jelly, and one is riding in a stroller and seems afraid of all the colors.

The women gather their purchases; bell peppers, hot peppers, cucumbers, summer squash. Carrot and radish seeds. Potting soil.

Back at the grandmother's house, the mother tries to calm the youngest member of her family under the trees. Her hands are gritty with potting soil, it's not the same as dirt, but it's closer than she's been for a long while. Her daughter is tired, her legs are sore from the shots she got, but she won't settle down to sleep. They rock in a swing, soft humming merging with the strong breeze sweeping down from between the trees. It carries with it the promise of half a hundred more summers like this one, with dandelion wine and strawberry jam and hot pepper jelly.

If God is good.


AlisonH said...

He IS. He gave you this one, and the words to capture it forever no matter what ever may come. Beautiful, Kristine. Thank you for letting us come to your summer day too.

Hot pepper jelly. I'm picturing my own nursing daughter's baby face after I ate a hot pepper dish the day before. MOM!! What did you DO!!!

And last night I was asking her to go easy on the hot peppers in her own cooking.

The summers do keep coming.

Shan said...

Cry cry cry.

That's me crying, not Lucy.

What a lovely post.

Shan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joansie said...

Lots of fun! I'm jealous.

Did you not make it to City Hall Park to knit last Saturday?

Rachel said...

I came over as directed by Shan :) and wanted to say that this is a great post...it made my mind wander as I dreamed of all those summers to come with jam, wine, and jelly!

Harriet said...

Wow....I feel like I have been somewhere today! You sure your not a closet writer as well?

Karin said...

What a beautiful writer you are.
I am almost glad you didn't have pictures...:)
Thanks for letting us in on that wonderful day you had.

Shan said...

Kristine, I posted
posted about your entry today. Sorry about the comment deletion - broken link so I thought I'd try again.


Gwen said...

Lovely post, thank you!

Norma said...

What a gorgeous little essay. And it's so nice that your mom is available and you can share the generations together.

Krista said...

Hello! I am writing to see
if you wanted to contribute to
an afghan for Rachael at yarn-a-gogo
in sympathy for losing her mom. I
am trying to collect 8 inch knit
Please contact me at knitdelaware
ATyahooDOTcom and let me know.
Thanks! Krista M

mel said...

What a lovely picture of a beautiful day, I love that it's not perfect, but still just beautiful.