Thursday, June 30, 2011

#155: Three Sisters Garden

I'm trying to grow a Three Sisters Garden this year. Planting codfish racks under the corn hills caused a slight problem. One of the chickens escaped and dug up all the hills to get at the fly larvae. Phooey:
Two of the seven stalks (out of 52!) that survived Sadie's scratching.

 So I replanted, this time under coffee sacks,
can you see the stalk peeking through next to the 'A'?

Here it is, closer:

Another tiny cornstalk:

Only I'm thinkin' the Native Americans didn't protect their plants with 
coffee sacks from Mexico and Ethiopia.
If you need coffee sacks for mulching,
 call Nantucket Coffee Roasters, 
they have plenty.
Plus, you can give your kids a geography lesson while laying out the sacks.

Note: when I checked under the sacks half my seedlings were growing sideways 
so I had to take the sacks off-carefully-and use them in the walkways.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

#154: Bok Choy on Nantucket

As Nantucket ships were involved in the China Trade,
 I wonder if they brought back any plants from Canton. 
One of our favorite vegetables to grow is bok choy.
 It always flourishes in our garden.
 As does swiss chard, leaving us with the perfect combination for spring rolls:
A little ginger from the store (we're growing it but it's not ready yet),
plus a little tofu. Some radishes and lamb's quarters too.
Stir fry and roll it up in egg roll wrappers.
Lightly coat with olive oil and broil, turning once. Voila!
Dinner from the garden in half an hour. 

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

#153: Nantucket Garden Harvest

The potatoes are ready to grub. Not the fat critters we turn up while plowing and feed to the chickens, 
the process of digging into the side of the potato hill to get new potatoes. 
You know it's time when the plants blossom:
Digging your own food just feels right:

Kennebec and Red Norlands.
The Yukon Golds, my favorites, aren't quite ready yet.

Monday, June 27, 2011

#152: Steps Beach

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Sunday, June 26, 2011

#151: Sermon Haiku #4- Jeremiah 2

This week's sermon was on Jeremiah 2:9-13. God's charge against His people for forsaking Him, the Living Water, and worshipping false gods. As in:
The choices I make
I'll do whatever I please
Am I happy now?

Forsaking your God,
Who redeemed your ancestors
What were you thinking?

Making your own gods
Cracked cisterns without water
a poor substitute

Nantucket water
Pristine, icy cold and pure
Why bottled water?

"We believe that we can manufacture the solutions that will fill our deepest needs."
Direct quote. That's part of the reason I love to wander out in God's creation.
 It helps me get focused back on Jesus. Anyway:
Come to the waters
Let those who are thirsty come
Never thirst again.

Come to Me and eat
You will delight in fatness
Totally fulfilled.

#150: Summer Visitors

In the winter only 5 of us lived here. Now the whole clan has returned plus two friends plus my sister, that makes 11 so far. This is what visitors, who thought they'd spend their days on the beach, end up dealing with at my house:

Then the folding fairy comes:
 Thanks, Katy.

As soon as this all gets put away...

 Beachtime. Yes!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

#149: Sankaty Light

This is Sankaty Light:
A classic lighthouse. If you want to know its history go here. My sister used to live in one of the Coast Guard cottages that sat beneath the Light. The cottages have been moved to town for low-income housing and the lighthouse itself was moved a few years back.
The Sankaty Bluff from which it shines has been eroding away.
There's a fence to keep folk off the bluff with the best signs:
long way to swim if you fall...
Plus, you'll be really itchy when you get there.

Friday, June 24, 2011

#148: Tamarack Trees

Right up against the Mooney Lodge at Camp Richard, the Nantucket Boy Scout Camp, there is a larch tree. The native Wampanoag name for the tree was Tamarack:
Tamarack trees are deciduous conifers. 
Their needles turn a bright yellow in the fall, then drop off.
There used to be quite a few tamaracks along Lovers' Lane but many have died. 
They don't tolerate shade well and other trees have grown taller.
They have the coolest needle pattern:
You can see why they're popular as bonsai.
Did you know that another name for the Wampanoag language group was Massachusett?
The name Massachusett means 'the people who live near the great hill'. 
I know this has nothing to do with Larch trees
 but John Eliot, a Puritan, 
translated the entire Bible into Massachusett in 1663. 
He then wrote a grammar and taught the written language to the tribe.
 A mind-boggling feat which continues with other people groups to this day. 

Thursday, June 23, 2011

#147: Red Sox

Sometimes you just have to get off-island. I know, I know, everyone else is coming here to vacation but this is where we work. Also, the Red Sox don't play on the island. So David took one of the kids to the Big City and saw:
Red Sox vs. Milwaukee Brewers
Big Flag!
Beautiful skies.
Boston lost, 4-2.
As they changed the game from 2 pm to 7 pm, 
 David and our kid had to stay overnight in America.
They made it home in time for the church picnic Sunday.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

#146: Moors' End Strawberries

 Summer is officially here, the strawberries are ripe at Moors' End.
And even though they cost $6 a quart we have to get some.
By some, I mean lots.
The ones in our own yard aren't abundant enough for this:
Strawberry shortcake with homemade cake and whipped cream.
The peony is just for scent. The tea set is my daughter's.
It comes in handy for celebrating God's goodness whenever we're aware enough to appreciate Him. The tablecloth is from David's trip to climb Mount Kilimajaro with two of the kids.
It may be more suited to wrapping around a Masai herder but we like it for the table.

#145: Nantucket Waterfront

As Blogger is refusing to let me download my planned strawberry shortcake photo this morning I'm afraid I'll have to redirect you. There are some amazing Nantucket photos here.
I don't often take waterfront pictures as Martie is so good at it. In-land is more my gig. I'll try Blogger again later but for now, no pictures at Tie Chic.
 Speaking of photos, yesterday we had the rare opportunity of a photo shoot of ALL our kids back home. They range in age from 13 to 25, and location from Providence, RI to San Francisco. There's an advantage to living in a resort community. Your kids come home in the summer.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

#144: Family Gravesites

There are three Glidden Family burial sites on the island. The Prospect Hill one has four graves:
The three on the left are Charles Swain Glidden--founder of the Island Fish Market, now Glidden's Island Seafood--his wife, Catherine C. Blessing(ton), and their son, James B., also a fish dealer, who died of pneumonia at age 42. David's grandfather, Walter D. ran the market after his father died. Which makes my husband a fourth generation fishmonger. And we're having grilled salmon cakes for dinner. Yum.
The fourth grave belongs to a fish market employee, James C. Lumbert,
 who died at the age of 57 from blood poisoning.
Apparently, he got poked by a poisonous spine of some fish and the wound festered.
As he had no family, the Glidden's buried him in their plot.
Least they could do.

Monday, June 20, 2011

#143: Sermon Haiku #3- Isaiah 51

Looks like this is going to be a regular Monday feature. Pastor Rich is working his way through the E100 Challenge. We are currently in the book of Isaiah. As he talks, I write Haiku. You'd think it'd be distracting but actually, it keeps me focused. I think the constant finger counting bothers people around me tho'. I'll have to be more discreet. This week:

Rejection leads to-
Resent then retaliate
Overt or covert

How can we be free?
Turn to the Rock you came from
Look! The Lamb of God.

He took up our cause
Suffering for His people
We are the black sheep
A costly free gift
Through His bruises we are healed
Payment accepted

God calls to His own
I am not yet done with you
Live now in the light
Following Jesus
Who did not retaliate
Go, serve in His strength

Saturday, June 18, 2011

#142: Round Red Radishes

Radishes are a kid's favorite vegetable to grow. When my daughter was a toddler I planted the seeds in the shape of her name and they came up: H I, A M Y. She loved it.
Vegetables saying hi! 
  They are so magical to pull from the ground:
Bright red balls! Or all different colors if you're harvesting Easter Egg radishes.
Another one of those things God made just for the joy of it.
Only, what to do with the hotness? 
I like them cold, dipped in salt.
Do any of you have a way to prepare radishes so kids can enjoy them too?
Tell me by clicking on '0 comments'.
And make a  comment!
Kids everywhere will thank you.

#141: Worn and Beautiful

What is it about old, worn things being lovelier to me than new, shiny ones? Part thrift, part appreciation for the history of something. Or an appreciation of the Second Law of Thermodynamics. Life itself is precious because it passes, and worn things remind me of that. David took this picture in New Hampshire:
Nature's first green is gold,
Her hardest hue to hold.
Her early leaf's a flower;
but only so an hour.
Then leaf subsides to leaf.
So Eden sank to grief,
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay.

Nothing Gold Can Stay from Robert Frost's Collected Poems.

Friday, June 17, 2011

#140 Amaranth: weed or food?

The garden is growing:
View from the gate.
But so are the weeds. In order to plant the zucchini and patty pan squashes
we (meaning myself, two of my daughters, my son, my sister, and a helper)
had to weed out hundreds, seemed like thousands, of amaranth plants.
They thrived in the fish enriched soil we meant to provide for the squash.
Here's one, hosting a grasshopper:
They have straight red taproots and had to be dug by hand.
We fed buckets of them to the chickens. As it turns out, we could have eaten them ourselves. They are a food crop in many parts of the world. In Nigeria, amaranth is called 
arowo jeja, which translates: 
'we have money left over for fish.'
Next year, I may try amaranth instead of popcorn. It certainly grows well here.
Perhaps my prejudice against it,
 not shared by the grasshopper, 
is costing me food I could be producing easily, 
instead of working so hard to grow non-native crops.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

#139: White Mountain Climbing

David took these shots while climbing in the Presidentials with two of our teens:
The heavens are telling
 the glory of God.
 The wonders of His work
the firmament.
Sometimes you need a big vista to worship a big God.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

#138: Neckties Rock

One of the reasons I upcycle neckties is their wide variety of colors. During most of the years men have worn neckties, the tie has been their most expressive clothing item. A guy could show his personality through his tie--or his family could show how they saw him. Here's a smorgasborg of masculine beauty:
Stripes and lobsters.
Bright reds--from politicians perhaps or a southern preacher...
And everything else. Oooh, paisleys, aren't they gorgeous?
A part of being made in God's image is having His creative spark.
Even if you have to wear a tie every day.
Neckties rock.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

#137: Wind Energy

Nantucket has been using wind energy since 1746. We have the oldest working windmill in the country! Of course, it doesn't generate electricity but it does grind corn.
We sure have a lot of wind:
So, there's now a windmill at the high school:
It's a project which generates electricity for the school
 and a learning opportunity for the students.
And, from the perspective of the wisteria growing on the basketball court fence:
It's kinda pretty.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

#136:Sermon Haiku #2- 1 Corinthians

Pastor Rich is away this week so Bob gave the message. 
It was on I Corinthians 1:26-31. Here's the Haiku:

Ideal follower

Outgoing and confident

Not by God's standards

God chooses the weaklings
the despised ones, the lowly
to shame the mighty

In-grown believer
Focused on my own weakness
I deny His power

God has a purpose
He is stronger than man's strength
Just open your eyes

Thanks, Bob.

Moose Mama

David loves to take our kids hiking and mountain climbing. This time it was the two middle kids' turn. They climbed Mt. Washington. On their second night in the campground they saw:
A Mama Moose and her one year old.
Moose  look like God was thinking "This'll be funny!"
when He made them. Especially the ears.
They were hiding in the brush, eating leaves:
But the mother was protective:
So David had to scoot:
He knows better than to tangle with a crabby female.
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