This is a hollyhock that I have grown from seed. I started six of them indoors last spring. This is the lone survivor. When they reached a few inches in height, I transplanted them to my flowerbeds. This one in the rose bed will bloom soon.
Hollyhocks are biennials. They don’t bloom until their second year. So I am eagerly waiting to find out what color it is since I planted a packet of mixed colors. I check every day now for any hint of color.
I started several more hollyhocks from seed this year. Although they do reseed themselves, you have to plant them for two successive years to have blooms every year. I am keeping this year’s seedlings in pots until they are bigger in the hope of having a higher survival rate.
The anticipation is real!
I seem to find opportunities to build the strength of patience all around me lately. I think this might mean that I am cranky and impatient. Never the less this gives me the chance to work on this virtue.
Our family was very fortunate this year to have the largest crop of cherries that has grown in the almost 12 years that we have lived here. You can see them in the basket. We think that they are Queen Anne cherries or a similar variety. They are heirloom and organic. Not to mention delicious. It took three of us 20-30 minutes to pick this many cherries. Now I must have the patience to seed all of these cherries and make them into a pie. At least this has its own rewards!
It also took a certain amount of patience to pick all the berries for this service berry pie. As I stood in the puddles of rain water from our continual storms as of late, I was swarmed by mosquitos. I knew if I wanted the pie that this was my only chance. The berries are only on the trees for a short time before the birds eat them all. This took patience, and swatting, to finish the job. The prize was worth it. It was the first time we had enough service berries to bake a pie. It tasted like a cross between cherries and plums and another unidentifiable but heavenly flavor.
I had a chance to exhibit patience last evening as well. On a therapy dog visit to the care facility as we sat and conversed with our friends there was one lady who was telling tidbits from her life. She shared with us the fact that she had a dog named Trixie who was like a member of her family. She shared this great revelation with us about 10 times. To be honest it didn’t take much patience for me to listen to her repeat the tale. It made her so happy. And we never ran out of things to talk about or had that awkward silence. She could always tell me about Trixie again. I would want someone to show me the same kindness.
(Picture of two past foster dogs, Gracie and Selah, now in a loving home.)
And when I got home last evening I called a lady that I was told needed some rescue help with her dogs. It turned out that she did not think she needed help from rescue. She had found help in the form of two young people to assist her with day to day dog care. I pray she is right. But I listened to her tell me about their bloodlines starting 30 years back. And various animals she had rescued over the years. Not to mention information about her fantastic memory and other information about her family. This was all well and good. That lady sounded lonely and was in need of an ear to bend and to share her troubles. It gave me time to practice my skills of patience. And keep a good rapport and the lines of communication open on the chance that there is ever a day when those dogs do need us.
So the easier times of having patience to do unimportant things like pick fruit to make a pie, are training for things of consequence like improving lives. Lives of dogs and lives of people. Rescue work is multi-faceted.