Since Dennis is starting a new job, last Friday was the last chance we had to have an “official” vacation. His daughter had borrowed the kayaks, so we opted for a trip to the beach.
Since we only live an hour from the coast, I make it a point to get out to the ocean at least once a year. I love the waves and the smell of the salty air and let’s face it, there is nothing tastier than New England seafood on a hot summer day.
We took the road that took us to Portsmouth then south to Rye and Wallis Sands State Park. It was packed as we had an official heat wave that week, the first since 2013. The tide was high and that made for limited real estate on the beach. Still, we found a little spot and headed in to the waves. At sixty-eight degrees the water was a bit chilly for Dennis, but I thought it was nice and it didn’t make my ankles numb. We aren’t crowd people though and after a couple of hours we decided it was time to go.
We headed to Petey’s for lunch. They were mobbed, too, but we found a seat on the patio at the bar. We drank Cokes and ordered two friend seafood combo plates. It was delicious.
We took the side roads back home past old New Hampshire farms and wide areas of hay fields. It was warm, the sun was shining and everything was perfect.
We extended Pearl’s medicine a few extra days as she wasn’t quite back to normal on Friday and the vet said we could continue until we saw improvement. We took the three girls out for a romp through the hayfield letting them munch as they went.
As the sun settled in the evening, we took Jacob our ram out and gave him a good brushing. He is still shedding out his coat and we thought we’d give him a hand. He is such a love and enjoyed the attention and the good rubbing he got.
Saturday and Sunday brought drier weather with a nice breeze, though it was still very hot. We headed to a different farmer’s market Saturday morning to check things out. It was small and they didn’t have what we needed, but it was a beautiful ride through hills past the big lakes and an old town village.
We spent most of Saturday getting errands out of the way so we could stay home and relax on Sunday. Well, relax isn’t exactly the word I’d use. Dennis worked all day on building the nest boxes for the chickens. The hens should start laying in about a month and we wanted to be sure they knew where they needed to lay.
I pulled up the zucchini plants from the garden as they were just about done and had the powdery mildew stuff they had gotten last year and we didn’t want it to spread to the other squash and cucumbers.
Somehow we ended up with a gourd plant. We thought it was a summer squash when it first started to grow so we left it. It flowered and nice yellow fruit began to grow, but as they got larger it was clear it wasn’t summer squash.
The corn is doing well, if I can keep the Japanese beetles off of them. They are also enjoying the pea plants and sunflowers, too. There isn’t much that kills those little suckers. We just continue to squash them when we can.
I shredded enough zucchini to make eight loaves of zucchini bread this fall and I froze the currants, as we still don’t know what to make with them. We still have nine zucchinis in the refrigerator and several cucumbers. Dennis was talking about making more of the sweet pickles to use up what we have, but I also want to try the zucchini pickles before those go bad.
The next big thing will be the tomatoes. The cherry tomatoes are so heavy they have fallen over, tomato cages and all. We have tons of plum tomatoes but the plants are turning yellow and the leaves are turning brown and falling off and we aren’t sure what is happening. We are keeping our fingers crossed that the fruit will ripen soon so we can start canning.
I picked four big bouquets of lavender flowers and have them drying in the barn. They smell heavenly and will be great for adding to soaps or potpourri. I need to do the sage, oregano, basil, time and mint next.
It will be strange having Dennis working full time again. I’ve come to enjoy having him be home. The extra money will be nice, though and we are already planning the barn and what color to paint the house.
Once the barn and fencing are all up, it will make things a lot easier. We have already talked about tearing down the existing barn to add a garage and little shop where we can sell our farm goods and antiques. Dennis will still need a workshop somewhere. Off the garage, perhaps?
It’s hard to believe it is August already and if the weather app on my phone is correct, temperatures will already be back down in the seventies come later this week. Typically, by the second half of August you can already see some of the leaves change.
The Belknap 4-H Fair is this coming weekend and the big Hopkinton Fair is the first weekend of September. The Deerfield Fair, also a large Fair, is the first weekend of October.
Not that I want to rush summer, but sadly we only have a month left, “unofficially.” And that, my friends, is very sad indeed.