The Old Tattered Flag

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Finding some calm in the Zucchini patch...

There is one thing I have always been very good at and that is self diagnosing myself.  When I am down I can recognize my "funk" and pull myself out of it.  When I am angry I need to rant, sometimes for a few days (to my family's dismay) to get it out and figure out a situation and fix it.  When I am stressed I tell myself to step back and chill. (it doesn't always work but I do tell myself that)  One thing I have recognized is that my life has gotten way too busy.  Mom and I have created a successful business quite by wonderful accident.  In 2010 Mom asked me if I thought anyone in the area would like to learn how to rug hook.  So, she had me draw up some beginner patterns and a business was born.  I think you all know our story by not, check out my website, and you'll see what we're all about.  For the past 2-3 years I have felt like it was becoming a bit of a monster.  Don't get me wrong, I love every minute of what I do, however, when you look forward to getting away to fold that mountain of laundry that has been piled in your room for days you realize that you may need to shift gears.  

I need to STOP and literally smell the roses....or flowers in my own yard.....

Life had become so busy that I wasn't taking pictures anymore, or writing on my blog like I use to.

I use to stop dead in my tracks when I saw a busy little bee tucked in the flowers and snap a photo.

And I had forgotten just how magnificent that plain white flower actually was on it's own.

Before I knew it it was mid-August and the bittersweet berries were popping...

The black eyed susan's were starting to look a little tired....yet still beautiful.

Even Max knows how to take the time to stop and smell the "roses".

Mom and I decided to make some small changes to our business hours....changes that most won't even notice but that will allow us to get creative again, not just in our business but with our personal lives.  Changes that will allow us to maybe knock off work a little early so we can enjoy the beauty in our own yard.

We always say that in our next life we want to come back as one of our dogs.

Baxter certainly knows how to relax.

So, you may ask how I got to "finding some calm in the zucchini patch"?  I was in my office the other day, at the end of the day, and my husband was doing yard work.  I asked him if he'd like some help....sure I'll mow.  I love to mow...I love the smell of fresh cut grass and I get some of my best thinking done on the lawn mower.  So, I was mowing and lo and behold, 2 giant zucchini peeked out at me.  Little did I know that Mom had plunked a zucchini plant along the fence line.  So, I picked them and planned my Sunday.  I love Sunday!  I've talked about it before.  It's the day of the week I can take my time with a soup, baked good or a well thought out meal for my family, instead of a quick throw together.  I can "putter around" the house, re-arrange things, fold that mountain of laundry and actually take the time to put things away and even write on my blog.  

When I was a teenager, my friend Kelley's mother made the most delicious Cream of Zucchini soup so that was first on my list.

I don't really use recipes for soups.....though I did briefly glance at one.  I sautéed some onions, added 6 cups of shredded zucchini, water, parsley, S&P, chicken stock, boiled it down, then pureed it.  Made a roux with butter and flower, added 2 cups of milk and 1 cup of half and half. It was a bit thick so I added more chicken stock, about another cup.  
Usually with soup it's better the second day, but this one was so good right away that we had it for lunch.  Thankfully I made a double batch so there is plenty left over.

Then it was on to Zucchini bread.  Plain old Zucchini bread!  No chocolate chips, no banana.....ok, maybe a little cinnamon sugar in between the layers.

So, I am a big believer in signs.  To me those zucchini's were telling me what I already knew.  Stop working so much and enjoy life.  If I had not hopped on that lawn mower I would not have seen those zucchini's and they may have rotted away.  Sometimes as women I think we take on so much....we don't say "no"......we are all about pleasing others so much that it can be a detriment to our own well being.  I know myself well, and I know when I need to stop and smell the zucchini bread.  Have a wonderful Sunday everyone and as usual,
Until next time......


elaine allerton said...

Understand what u r saying completely, julie!!
My husband and I had a deli, cafe vitamins , gifts,, for 12 years,,, yikes,, loved it but,,,, retired 5 years ago! Wow, time has flown,,, but love my life!! Good for you!!♡

theoldtatteredflag said...

Yes, owning a business is hard...I don't want it to come across that it's all about the business. I think as women, whether we own a business or not we tend to take a lot least I do and another certain woman I know.....Mom! lol, we are really trying to remind ourselves lately to slow down. It's only better for everyone involved, right?

Saundra said...

While I don't grow my own I sure do LOVE zucchini in all forms...bread, steamed, with pasta sauce on top, in soups, etc. Wish I lived close enough to help enjoy your bounty.

theoldtatteredflag said...

Me too, I could fill a bag for you!

moosecraft said...

What a great post! Thank goodness you discovered this before it adversely affected your (and your family's) health! Enjoy your home and some relaxing!
P.S. I'm another person that finds peace in mowing the lawn and "playing" in the kitchen! :-)

Doc S said...

Absolutely true that you must 'take time'. We all need to add ourselves to the priority list. You have built a wonderful business; one that we treasure. Things that are important include date nights and creative time. Go for it! Everyone!

C Reeder PhxAz said...

Remember - the heart pumps blood to itself first. We do stretch ourselves over and over. Every once in the while the zucchini appear for each of us. Good for you for listening to your heat and mowing.

Jacqueline said...

I hope for you and your Mom that this attitude holds for more than a day. We all need our alone time to do what our soul needs to survive.

Samplings from Spring Creek said...

Listening to yourself--if everyone could learn to step back and smell the zucchini bread

About Me

Thank you very much for taking the time to read my blog. I am married and just entering the second phase of my life as a Army retiree's wife. My husband and I did 25+ years in the Army. He is now officially a retired Colonel and has just entered the civilian workforce and I am happily settled in our 1830 Stone house. I (along with my Mom) operate www.theoldtatteredflag and currently we are building a small shop in the back part of the house. We live in Northern NY, right near the Canadian border. I have two handsome sons and 2 puggles. Life is busy for us, but I wouldn't have it any other way.