Before our Memorial Day/Welcome Summer celebration supper of Memphis-style baby back ribs, corn-on-the-cob, watermelon and a 2005 Merlot, we put in a hard day’s work planting the new annuals, perennials, herbs and veg.

One step out of onto the patio leads to pots of cilantro, mint, marjoram and basil flanked by our ever-spreading chive plant. On the other side, foxgloves.

Six tomato varieties this year [we’re hedging our bets that one will produce]: a yellow Jubilee, Early Girl, Burpee Big Boy, Green Zebra and two heirlooms – Purple Russian and Chocolate Cherry. Just to the north, a mound for cucumber seeds.

Sandy’s two flower pots on the patio: one with striped and rimmed petunias; the strawberry pot with violas on top and alyssum in the cups.

Look who I found in the front bed! I spy…


We’ve seen a duck couple wandering around ours and our neighbor’s front yards, assuming they had a nest somewhere. I guess our shrubs are coziest.

I was breaking up the mulch and had to do a double-take. At first I thought someone laid a container of eggs in our front bed. Then I realized it was the duck who laid eight or ten of her eggs in a nest made of cardboard! When I brought Dad over to show him my discovery, Mama was keeping her eggs warm and not the least bit happy to see us encroaching on her territory. She hasn’t left since, and now Papa duck occasionally flies in to stand guard.

I can’t wait to see ducklings flopping and flapping around our yard! But where will the brood go to drink and learn how to swim?! I think our birdbath is a perfect duckling training area. Right?!