Monday, June 23, 2014

This shit never happens on Martha Stewart.

So, it's summer and now I have the urge to make things and can them. And then  the OCD compulsion to not allow anyone to eat them. But I'm trying.

Last night I hulled a shitload of strawberries and mixed up some vanilla strawberry jam and stuck it in the fridge to macerate overnight. And then I pulled out some rhubarb I had picked and chopped and froze a few weeks ago. I tossed it into the crockpot with vanilla beans, really strong chai tea, and a lot of fresh ginger and let it cook down all night long.

This morning I woke up with big plans. I boiled the strawberry vanilla goop and then jarred it up and canned it. It didn't set, I thought it probably would not. So it's strawberry sauce instead. Then I blitzed the stewed rhubarb with the stick blender and put it on to thicken up. When it was ready I got the jars all ready to go and filled with super sour, but oh, so good rhubarb butter. Went to process the last couple jars and noticed the water level n the canner was low.

So I picked up the other large pot full of very hot water (boiling ten minutes ago) and went to add it to the bigger pot.

This was a mistake. The second I picked it up I knew some shit was gonna go down. And yet....I carried on. Like a DUMBASS. Yeah, I spilled it. On my wrist. On my leg. On my belly. And then I thought I should put the damn pot down.

I got my burns under cool water and then used vinegar to help take the sting out. Then I finished the stupid rhubarb butter. Then I called my doc's office and hauled ass over there to see one of her colleagues who had an opening. I have second degree burns on my belly and leg and a nasty scald on my wrist. I have the magical silver burn cream from the doctor and a lot of bandages. And I am not allowed in a pool for a week, possibly longer if she doesn't like how things look next Monday.
I think things will look just fine. :D Mainly because I want to be back in the pool, man.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day

I am not very good at Father's Day. I used to be. Or I used to think I was. Because I just didn't let myself be sad about it. Because that would been showing vulnerability, which was a bad idea. So it was just another day. And somehow showing any sadness for my father was taken as a direct criticism by my mother. She so often pointed out that he chose to leave, he chose to die. And she stayed with us. And when she said that it really didn't feel like it was her choice to stay, but she got stuck with us because she didn't get out of it first. And she used to tell us it wasn't fair. She never got a break. She was never going to get a break from being a mother because our  father died and left her with us and being a single mother was so much harder when the kids don't get to go to their father's house every other weekend. Those things are undoubtedly true, she was on 100% of the time with no partner to pick up any slack. But it just made me feel like a burden. 

And then sometimes she would tell me how lucky I was that he was dead. Because if he had lived we never would have had the opportunities we had because we never would have left Ligonier, Indiana.
And for a while, I agreed with her. I thought I was really lucky that my father died. Like he did us a favor. And that is pretty fucked up. But it made her happy to hear it.

So for the past 30 years I have ignored it, gutted it out, acted like it just wasn't happening when at all possible, and today I just can't do it. Maybe it's because last month it was 30 years. A fact I realized randomly while driving to an appointment. I only know it's sometimes in the end of May, because I don't think we ever knew the day he died. We only knew the day he was found. Today, I think I miss him.

I had a father for 25% of my life. And he was a drunk for about 50% of that. I think of that 12.5% and wished I'd paid more attention to things. I wish I had made some better memories. Sat still and listened more often. Learned how to make paper airplanes. Liked fishing more so I could have hung out more.

I know so little about him and I forget more every year. I haven't been able to remember his laugh or his voice for years. Sometimes I kind of think I can, but I know it's just me trying to hang on to something. I only have one picture of him taken when I was 2 or 3, that's all. Sometimes I look in the mirror and think I have his blue eyes. But then I can't remember anymore. I know I flick dirt or crumbs off my fingers the same way he did. I. know he could build things and fix things, and he loved airplanes. I think he loved flying more than anything else in the world. I think flying a plane was probably the only time he felt happy. And I was too scared to go with him when I had the chance. I stayed home and waited for him to fly over our house a few times and "wave" at us with the wings.

That's all I have now, and I know I will have even less in the coming years as the memories get worn away.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Talk dirty to me..

It's finally spring and finally time to play in the dirt a little bit.
I planted up my window boxes and planters on Friday, made a plan and bought some more petunias on Sunday and stuck them in the dirt this morning after pulling a huge yard waste bag full of weeds. I still have several beds that desperately need weeding but I don't think there will really be much more to plant this year, unless I score a sweet deal on some perennials. I may need to hack up the lamb's ear I have growing in the front, it has taken over and doesn't look like it can be stopped.

I have forty-eleven craploads of rhubarb in the back, too. I need to rhubarb all the things. And my husband needs to trim the hedges that are totally out of control.

need to bring the rest of the bricks up to use as the border, it's coming along!

cannot wait till these fill out in a few weeks

that green crap in the front planter? It just showed up, it's cute. I left it.

my lavenders lived through the brutal cold!