Flowers and vegetables in garden make for a happy summer

The days of summer are slowly slipping away like sand in an hourglass.

As much as it is ‘the summer we lived through COVID’, I am sorry to see it go.

And as I walk down the path of my now familiar walk, it seems I have already accumulated tonnes of memories to store away along with my slightly less than perfect Saskatoon jam for the winter.

It seems, as much as the COVID rules would allow at least, I have had company spilling in and out of the front door of my home all summer long.

And it has been wonderful.

I love summer, and the way the flowers chirp up (that is the birds, I guess) flowers are silent for goodness sake, but you know what I mean. It seems when you step outside the flowers send out their own special welcome.

If I do say so myself, I have a yard full of absolutely beautiful flowers. I am incredibly proud of my flowers; in fact, they simply dazzle me every morning with their stunning rainbow of colour. I am not exactly sure how come I got so lucky, because, if the truth be known, I would not call myself a gardener.

I planted, I watered, and I sent lots of little prayers up above and I hoped. And when I heard raindrops on my roof I cowered down under my covers and prayed that it would not be hail.

And it was not.

The flowers flourished.

At this point in my column, I do have to give credit to my friend who does have a green thumb and a greenhouse and is my benevolent benefactor, every year bringing me a van load full of bedding plants that he has started from seed. And I know very well if he were not so kind as to grow the little seeds in the first place, my bounty of beauty would not happen.

He is the silent gardener behind the whole operation, but I, with my shameless bragging, get to take all the credit.

I did, however, plant a vegetable garden all by myself. True, it is miniature, but still, very edible. For the last two night we have feasted on carrots and potatoes and beans and beets and I have swelled up with immeasurable pride at my bounty.

“Have some vegetables,” I urge my guests. “They are right out of the garden.”

And then I wait for the confirmation of how good everything tastes right out of the garden.

And I glow with pride!

“Next year, it will be even bigger and better,” I bragged to my husband with a confidence born of optimism and the fact that in my head I have always been able to do great things, ‘tomorrow.’

Anyway, it has been a glorious summer and I am grateful for every moment that has slipped through my very own hourglass of time.

My sister and her husband came to visit last night and after we got the dishes done, she and I sat on the chesterfield chatting about stuff while the men played crib. Our talk as always is sprinkled with laughter and tinged with his sadness.

We had three brothers once. Three brothers who shared our very own family hourglass of time.

They are all gone now, taking with them their laughter, their delicious sense of humour, their endless teasing and their comforting hugs.

One summer a long time ago, we were all together in my house, in my kitchen, and summer, with all its magic, its warmth and its gentleness, was nothing less than perfect.

I just did not know it.

I did not know how very rich I was!

Treena Mielke is a central Alberta writer. She lives in Sylvan Lake with her family.

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