Thursday, July 9, 2009

Refrigerator-deep in green beans

Tis the season to pick/snap/wash/can green beans. Hooray! Time to channel my inner Amish homemaker and stash away my summer bounty in hopes of cheap winter treats!
And that is all I feel like I'm doing lately. It seems my beans are all ready and willing to be picked and my life hasn't slowed to allow me the chance to gather the energy or time to oblige them.
Last year I canned almost 50 quarts of beans and made a couple batches of blackberry jam. This year our garden is so far outdoing all my other years (the whole three of them!) and we are knee deep in unripe tomatoes, soon-to-be ready corn, potatoes, carrots, cucumbers, mini-bell peppers and green beans...lots of green beans. A refrigerator full to be exact!
So last weekend we took to the garden. The kids were behaving well and keeping themselves occupied, so we took to it. Pulled weeds, picked beans, cucumbers, carrots and potatoes.
And then we looked up! I quickly lowered my gaze and resumed the task in front of me. I didn't want to acknowledge the four short people by the water, transporting buckets to and fro to the dig dirt. Which was now MUD!
But they were all getting along so well! So Matt and I kept going and decided to deal with the mud-covered creatures ... later.
Being so calm about all that was a HUGE step for me. I swallowed my type-A, over-attentive, OCD cleaning obsessive ways and let the kids have a great time. And in exchange, we got an hour or so of uninterrupted garden time!
As I sit here typing this now, kids are running, singing, arguing, yelling and there is the normal mayhem surrounding me. The beans are still waiting patiently on the vine and the supper is still waiting patiently for me to cook.
My four kids have taught me a lot — some of which I'm still trying to master, like taking the time to play in the mud.

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