Monday turned out to be the best rain since early May. We got almost an inch before the night was over. That rain did more for the gardens than all the watering we could do for weeks. Yesterday we went down in the late afternoon and watered again just to get more water to soak in down to the roots. The beans look better and maybe that third planting will finally give me some beans, the first planting is still the best and is still producing more flowers and beans, the second planting is blooming again so should have some more too. Usually we would have pulled these and planted more but the way the weather has been this year new plantings don’t do much. The temperature is still too hot and runs about 8 – 10 degrees above normal so it is not good to work outside after about 10 a.m. I got out again before 6:30 and got the raspberries almost done. I had all the old cane removed but still had some new cane to tie up and some to tie and run into pots to start new plants. I have about 8 canes still to take care of and then will pull out a little of the mulch which is too thick so I can fertilize all the plants. Then I am done with the raspberries until Oct when I prune again. Then I cut them back to about 4 feet and let them branch out over the winter and into the spring. In the spring I will cut out any cane that didn’t make it, tie up any new can and cull out the cane that is too small to be of much use. I hope the 18 or so pots I have put out now to root will be rooted well by spring so I can make a new bed down below. Yesterday my vanilla beans came. We have such a long steep drive way the mailman and UPS man hated to deliver to our door so we put a big box at the top of the drive, not too far from the mail box and they put our boxes in there. When Norman goes up for the mail he checks the box, if the mailman puts one in he locks the box so we can tell at a glance there is something in there but the UPS man doesn’t know the signal so yesterday whenever he came he put it in the box and Norman never found it until this morning when he went out for his walk. So before breakfast we put up two fifths of vanilla extract. We cut the pods and took out the beans and put the whole thing into the bottle, 12 beans per bottle leaving enough vodka to cover the tall beans but leaving enough head room to shake the bottle. Now they are in the cellar pantry where we will shake the bottle once a week for 6 weeks, then every couple weeks at the same time air the remainer of the vanilla beans. They must sit there and age for 6 months so when we go to Florida in Nov. we will take a bottle for Patty and Becca. This is so much more fun and easier than going to Mexico for the fresh vanilla. The store bought vanilla is so expensive and has too many additives in theirs for me. I like the pure vanilla extract. Carl has been sending me pictures of Harrisville. This is one of the mill
in the center of Harrisville. This one was called the lower mill. There were two other big mills above this one. The second picture is of Call’s blacksmith shop. It stood just down the road from John Clark’s house. It was never in use when I was alive but was still standing. There was a dam in the brook that gave the shop the power but that dam was blown during the huracane of 1938. I don’t know when the shop itself was destroyed. The tramp house was across the street from this and I had to walk (run) past it any night I was out playing with the kids inorder to get home so most nights I was home before dark. Right now the picture is very fuzzy. I hope it clears up over time. The picture on the left is of the center of town, what we called overstreet. When I went to high school we lived in the large house in this picture. It was a mill house and my folks rented it. For years we lived in a small mill house on Peanut Row and paid $2.00 a month for the house. When they moved to the big house they paid $5.00 a month and we had indoor plumbing!! Of course my father had to work in the mill or we could not live there. The last picture is of my grand mother, Uncle Web , Aunt Angie, Uncle Bing and my Dad some time before 1917 as in 1917 Uncle Web died. They live in the next house on the canal in the center of town. That house was owned by the church and she rented that from 1906 until she had to go to a rest home some time in the 60’s. Have a great day.