Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Just Dandy!

Dear Mom,
There is a new project brewing at Peacemaker Farm...we are attempting to make dandelion wine.

Cheerful neighbors looked on as we "harvested" chemical-free dandelions from their yards, and excited children were eager to help us collect the yellow flowers! Approximately 2 quarts of dandelion flower heads were collected. The wine recipe requires most of the green material to be removed from the flower heads, leaving a heaping pile of petals. The petals were then covered with boiling water and left to steep for two days.

We are new to the art of wine making, so we are learning as we go. The ingredients are simple: dandelion flowers, sugar, oranges, water and Champagne yeast. It will take six months to a year before we will even know how it tastes!

Love, Bonnie Jo

Cancer Survivor

Dear Mom,
Gracie is my neighbor's granddaughter. Today is her birthday. She is four years old. A lively, active, very funny four year old. She is also a cancer survivor. When she was 15 months old, the doctors found a tumor in her kidney. She had her kidney removed and months of chemo, with a central line in her chest because chemo tubes and needles are so painful for a not-even-two-year-old. We had to be careful when we picked her up, even though that is all we wanted to do. Pick her up and snuggle with her and try to make her feel better. We wanted to try to understand. She has a scar that covers the entire width of her belly; a scar from one side to the other side of her. But two years later and if you don't know Gracie, you would never know she had cancer. She is a survivor. And she is also a deep comfort to me in a way no one knows. She is the baby that we held and cradled and drew comfort from when Daddy died. She was only days old when Daddy died so suddenly. In the shock of Daddy, a baby. In Gracie, there are reminders of time without Daddy. Four years already? I still remember my last conversation with Daddy, like it was yesterday; the laugh of Daddy during that conversation. I also draw strength from Gracie, the little four year old that has survived so much already. Gracie, the baby that provided quiet comfort on a cold and rainy April day.
Happy birthday, Gracie girl!!!
Love, Wendy