Monday, January 31, 2022

Smelling The Roses

Last night I made my husband pose with one of our giant mustard leaves. And trust me- that is not the biggest one out there. But it's impressive enough, I think. 

I talked myself into getting out and walking today. It's been weeks, I think. Or a month. Whatever. Too long. It was beautiful and clear and by the time I started out it had warmed up nicely. A perfect temperature for walking. No Man Lord seems to have acquired yet another RV to set on his property which is good because it seems to be in far better repair than the one he has been sleeping in. I'm curious as to how these acquisitions occur but I am glad that they do. His yard at the moment is filled with scattered aluminum cans which he crushes and then sells, I suppose and how he gets those is another mystery. Someone must bring them to him. He did have very neat stacks of firewood for sale for awhile but it would seem that he's sold most of those. He always has a fire going in his yard now that it's cold. 
I do not know how he does it. Too cold in the winter, too hot in the summer, no electricity. No car. No plumbing except for a spigot near the road. No privacy. I think he might go across the street into the woods in lieu of having a toilet. 
I don't know. 
I'm sure that if he lived just another half mile down the road in Leon County, instead of living as he does in Jefferson County, he would have been dealt with by the law or human services or something by now. But he doesn't and so here he is, people helping him in various ways, and I am shamed every time I go past his house, thinking of my warm house, my three bathrooms, my chickens and garden, the yard full of cars and trucks, my more than comfortable bed, and washer and dryer, my hot and cold running water, my beautiful stove where I cook wonderful meals from the food we can afford to buy and that we can afford to grow. Trust me- growing your own food is not necessarily a money saver in any way. To improve the soil costs money, to buy seeds and plants costs money. To provide irrigation costs money. And all of the work put into it is not to be discounted either. It's so easy to wonder why people who live in poverty and who have a bit of dirt don't grow some of their own food but trust me- they can probably no more afford that than they can afford to buy it. And anyone who thinks they can save money by keeping chickens is dreaming. If we had to calculate what each egg we get cost us in chicken food, we'd no doubt see that buying our eggs would be a lot cheaper. Of course we like to think that our eggs are far superior to the ones you get in the store and we do have the satisfaction of knowing that our chickens lead pretty happy lives, wandering about and scratching where they want all day long, with plenty of extra food to eat.


Speaking of eggs, this is what I found today when I took the covers off the front porch plants to water them and let them get some sun today.

Those sneaky hens have been at it again. And they've been doing this literally undercover. Crazy girls. And now that I've discovered their hiding spot, they'll quit laying there. 
It doesn't appear to me that I've lost any of my porch plants. Some got nipped for sure but they'll be back. 
I cut the not-fully-opened roses from the yard this afternoon and put them in a little glass pitcher I'd forgotten I had but found when I did that archeological dig of the shelf above the sink. It was filled with feathers, of course. 

Maybe this week I'll take the pruners to all the roses and cut them back. Obviously, if I wait until they stop blooming it's never going to happen. I also desperately need to cut back the confederate jasmine because it's going to pull down the fence it's on if I don't. That is a messy, sappy, time consuming job. There are places where the vines have reached up and braided themselves quite literally together, forming ropes reaching for the sky. Nature is fierce, my friends. 
It all seems so overwhelming at times but I think the way to get things done is to go slowly and plod my way through it all. 

Can you believe it's the last day of January? I remember when Gibson was just a little guy and he always told me to drive "super speed" when he was in the car. Time is going super speed now, the tracks greased with all the years behind me. 
And that is the way that it is which is why I do not mind moving as slowly as an old mule in the field, warming its withered back in the sun as it grazes. 

Love...Ms. Moon


  1. No man Lord is an interesting person. It seems as if he manages his life pretty well, though to outsiders it's a mystery how he does it. Maybe it's just as well the county doesn't interfere with him.

  2. I know you do what you feel comfortable with in helping Mr No Man Lord.......and I trust other neighbors do as well. Some people just live on the perimeter...... and probably for good reason? Glad you had good walk.......and that mustard leaf is huge! Did you eat it?
    Susan M

  3. Life is going by at super speed. I wish I knew how to apply the brakes or ease up on the gas. But you have roses, so that is good.

  4. I was thinking today I do everything at half the former speed. But, it won't get done any faster.

  5. three eggs shy of a dozen, crazy hens! They must be as confused as everyone else on this planet. Maybe it is the weather that makes them want to find silly nests. Who knows. Chickens are hilarious.

  6. Your husband has a nice face. The cost of growing your own is why I don't, but I well remember a house I once rented with a huge backyard with soil so dark and so easily spaded, it seemed all I had to do was throw down some seed, water once a week and a few months later we had enough to share with extended family and work colleagues. I was sad to move away, but the rent got too high.
    Are the eggs you found still good?

  7. No Man Lord sounds as if he has chosen his life. That's a hard thing sometimes to watch someone who seems to have a harder life than he needs to have, but in the end, you have to remember that it is a choice. I'd probably talk to him, if he's a talkable person. Drop a bag of cans off when I can. If I hear of a need, I'd try to meet it. But sometimes, for whatever reason, people want to be left to themselves. Sometimes, it is just about respecting their choices.

  8. I suspect No Man Lord enjoys his freedom and his solitude. He strikes me as a bit of a hermit, and off-the-grid type of guy, even if not entirely by choice.

    Those chickens are hilarious! Do you think the eggs are still good? Or have they been there too long?

  9. My neighbor Gary has a small garden growing greens and the usual winter veggies. His collard leaves are that big, maybe bigger. My sister kept chickens mostly because her husband wanted chickens and when he died she got rid of them mainly because of the expense and she said the same thing...chickens are sneaky. I agree with other commentators, No Man Lord has chosen his life. Some people just prefer basic simple lives, Just think of all the problems he doesn't have to deal with.

  10. We have more snow coming tomorrow so I hope to get out today and dig out the ends of my gutter downspouts. The gutters can't drain because the downspouts are buried in the snow we got last week. Doesn't that sound like a fun activity for the day?
    Happy Chinese New Year, by the way!

  11. I remember watching a fairly long Youtube video about a man and his huge, organic garden. It was so inspiring watching all the stuff he grew - until I realized he had a ride-on machine for this, a quad for that, another ride-on for something else and it made me realize his "self-sufficiency" was pretty expensive. Still, he had a lovely set up!

  12. To have eggs from happy hens is worth so much- I go to great lengths to buy free range eggs-which the shop owner assures me they checked their living conditions out,but I still wonder... if it is a commercial deal,no sentiment can be involved.
    Love the roses, and Maggie looks so cute in her nightie.

  13. That mustard green leaf looks worthy of being held by Mr. Moon! And super speed has been the way of it for me for some years now, how could my children be all grown up and contemplating such adult things, while I seem to be limping in place. I am however trying to pace myself with our apartment refresh as you are with your garden, taking it one task at a time. I love that you have a life in which you can discover eggs laid in a plant pot. It's like a bit of magic to the city dweller.


Tell me, sweeties. Tell me what you think.