Saturday, September 22, 2012

Farmers Market Pumpkins

Alternate blog post title: How Many Pumpkins will fit in a Toyota Matrix?

I filled up my little car with pumpkins last night (in the dark, no less) so that I could take them to the farmers market this morning.  I got up at 5:45 am to get to the market by 7 am.  I parked on the town square and set up my little folding tables (fortunately I remembered to put those in the car before the pumpkins) and waited.  And waited.  The temperature on the bank sign across the street said 49 degrees.  And it was soooo windy.  And I had wet hair.  (Complain much?)  

Notice that it is light outside in this photo.  This is what my car looked like after the Farmers Market. 

It is Homecoming weekend for the university so there was a parade around the square.  I was hoping this would be good for the pumpkin business.  It was not.  Five hours and many marching bands later, I made $39.50 and had to load all those pumpkins back into my car.  

So what did I do when I got home?

I went out to the field and picked more pumpkins.

Pie pumpkins, to be exact.  They were the only thing I sold out of today at the market.  I also sold some mini gourds and wee-be-little pumpkins.  

Here's hoping the next few weeks of pumpkin sales improve...  There's hundreds more pumpkins in the field!  

Monday, September 17, 2012

Foggy Monday Morning

It's a slow-moving, foggy Monday morning after a weekend filled with activity.  On Saturday, I dressed up as Rosie the Riveter and drove an American flag covered farm 4x4 through a 175th anniversary homecoming parade.  Out here, homecoming is a lot more than a dance at school.

Yesterday, we celebrated the upcoming arrival of our friends' baby boy by throwing a backyard baby shower.  The weather was perfect, the food was tasty, and the gifts were bountiful.  The neighbor even had 3 newborn lambs running around in the backdrop, adding to the idyllic scenery.

Now it's the beginning of another week.  Joey's working hard harvesting corn and soybeans.  We've got lots of pumpkins turning orange so we're hoping to sell them at the farmer's market next weekend.   Here's to busy weeks, and even busier weekends!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Into Fall

I can't believe it's September already.  I've been caught up in the torrent of summer activity, both at home and at the library.  I was finally hoping to catch my breath and come up for air after a crazy summer and Joey's terrifying accident.  I couldn't believe it when he told me the other night that it had been exactly a month since his crash.  He thought it felt like a longer time than that.  To me, it could have been a couple days before.  I've realized this week that I am not quite over that scare yet.  Telephone calls from unknown numbers still send my heart to the pit of my stomach.  Filling out his insurance paperwork today made my hands shake.  Sometimes I can't help but reach my hand out to feel him beside me, to know that he is solid and still there.  I imagined him as the young prisoners of war as I read Lauren Hillenbrand's book, Unbroken.  I cried when we watched a 9/11 documentary and the wives of the men who had fought the airplane hijackers told about their last phone calls from their husbands aboard the plane.  Joey's trauma may have been physical, but mine is definitely emotional.

But life goes on.  And now we are transitioning from a whirlwind summer into a just as packed fall.  Last weekend, I celebrated my longtime friend's wedding as a bridesmaid.  This weekend is the homecoming celebration for the town I work in and I am preparing the library for the event.  I also have to prepare my float for the parade.  Only in a small town does a librarian get to drive an American flag-bedecked four-wheeler through the homecoming parade.

It is now harvest season and Joey is back to long hours in the field.  Most nights he works until 9 or 10 pm but last night I brought him dinner and rode in the tractor with him until 10:30.  I rode with him a couple times last fall, keeping him company, but it wasn't until last night that I remembered that we had sat in a similar tractor seven years before, dreaming of what our future would be.  John Deere tractors are built in Moline, Illinois, right down the street from the Augustana College campus, my alma mater.

On one of the very first weekends that Joey came to visit me at school freshman year, we visited the John Deere museum where the newest tractors and combines are on display.  You can climb up inside and sit in the cabs and marvel at how far the little green tractor has grown over the years.  Last night, I remembered sitting in the cab of a brand new combine with an unfathomable price tag, on the little fold-down seat next to Joey.  He had just started his degree in agriculture and the only tractors he'd ever driven were from the 1940's.  Somehow I completely forgot about sitting in the little seat imagining what our future would hold until last night when I was in that seat again.  We never imagined that we would move to a small town 25 minutes from Joey's university, or that we would raise sheep and chickens, or that just a few years later Joey would drive those big tractors, then sell them for half a year, and then be back again in his favorite place, behind the wheel of the John Deere.

You never know where you'll end up in life.  I never dreamed I'd be a small town library director when I was painting in the art building at Augustana.  I'm so happy we landed where we are.  And that we landed here together.

Our sunflowers have bloomed!  Just in time for the backyard baby shower I'm throwing for a friend this weekend!