Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Monday, July 14, 2008

I'm glad I don't have to commute

I've endured one week and one day of ballet camp. I'm not attending. My daughter is, but I may as well since my days are wasted in the metropolitan Jackson area. We leave the house around 7 a.m. and return by about 5 p.m. I did baby sit two days last week for my little sister, and pick up some emergency merchandise for the family business, so it wasn't totally wasted.

Oh! One other thing. I found a new bookstore, independent of course. Guess what the name is??????

Yellow Dog Books.

K and I couldn't resist the name, the books, or the diversion. A father-daughter team owns and operates the little store situated conveniently across the street from the Cultural Arts Center in Madison where Princess is dancing this week. Even though the store is small, it has some well chosen books - both for children and adults.

That's where I succumbed to temptation and bought another book. I was doing so well in my quest for less, but they plopped David Guterson's new book, The Other, right in my way. I own all his other books, including the homeschooling one, so it was inevitable that I should own this one too. At first I showed unbelievable self-control. I showed K the book and told him it was what I wanted for my upcoming birthday. We perused the remaining shelves, but I just kept drifting over to fondle The Other.

Then, I decided I needed to support small family businesses in this economic time of need.

I'll let you know how the book is, when I finish. Though you'd think I would have much time to read, I find the noisy environs of the Cultural Arts Center unsuitable for reading.

Four more days.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

This Morning Down on the Farm


Prehistoric birds,

Enormous bumble bees,
Squash with pizazz, and

And a BIG SMILE!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

The Lowly Black-Eyed Pea

I would guess that there is not a garden in this area that does not have at least one row of southern peas, lumped affectionately together as black-eyed peas. The ones I grow are technically pink eye, purple hull peas, but fill the same niche in our garden and larder. There are subtle taste and texture differences between crowders, black-eyed, purple hull, and lady finger, so you try a few and pick a pea. You don't really need to grow more than one kind in a garden unless you want a new variety. Bees just love peas and cross pollination is a sure thing.

In the garden, peas are nitrogen-fixing legumes that are also pollen rich. They love the heat of the south and are even drought tolerate. In the larder, peas are a staple of the southern table. Eaten along with greens or ham or with just cornbread, they are rich in Vitamin A, Folate, and Calcium. They also are a source of protein.

Perhaps, if Mississippians would remember their traditional foods and shun the fast food stands, they wouldn't be the fattest Americans, again.

Today, I will salute the lowly black-eyed pea. After I shell today's harvest, I will cook some, basically unadorned, to eat with some cornbread, accented with some pepper jelly - nothing better, really. Of course, having a hunk of watermelon for dessert wouldn't be bad.

Tradition. Not always bad.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008