Mother’s Day Lilacs

Reader Contribution by Angela Pomponio
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Our rainy cool weekends continue here in North Central Idaho.  The family chest cold has finally departed for more hospitable lungs and sinuses.  Saturday offered a brief respite from the rain.  The cool wet weather has been great for planting, not so hot for trenching and installing the gray water irrigation system our garden will require.

After my monthly wine, facials and laughs night Friday at our local version of Truvy’s Beauty Spot (Steel Magnolias); my hairdressing miracle worker and friend Angie Martini brought up an opportunity I couldn’t pass up. Angie just bought the lot across the street from her home after the house there burned down.  She is building a shop on the lot for her partners concrete equipment.  The established landscaping and several trees have to be moved for the construction. Her generosity proved again big hair equals big heart.  I’m not sure how Dom felt about my weekend plan, but he didn’t balk too much.

Saturday was warm and sunny, so we spent a couple of hours digging.  We ended up with two lilac starts, a forsythia that will shower our springs with sunshiney blooms, and a pickup bed full of ground cover.  We filled all of our flower beds and the terrace behind the house with at least 100 plantings.  Mint, lemon balm, and multiple other spreading perennials dot our immediate landscape.  With everything fertilized and watered, Dom set to mowing and I set up my beehive just past the edge of the garden site.

We enjoyed a cider braised pork roast pulled and simmered in local (Spokane, Wash.) Longhorn BBQ sauce on fresh fluffy rolls from the local grocery (no my bread baking hasn’t improved.)  I made some spicy slaw (thank heaven for sriracha) and baked a deep dish wild blackberry pie.  

Sunday dawned damp and 39 degrees.  Perfect for coffee on the deck and then off to work for me.  I drove to Grangeville about an hour away and met two new facial clients.  The best part about my freelance nursing career is meeting women ready to do a little something kind for themselves, not to  mention the flexible schedule.  I came home on this chilly Mother’s Day to a homemade glittery card and a very special new planting.

Dom and Dominic had transplanted a big lilac from my mother-in-law’s garden.  She dug this lilac over 40 years ago from her grandparents’ homestead at Nez Perce, Idaho.  It was brought to Idaho from the family homestead in Minnesota before the turn of the century.  It’s origin is her peoples’ ancestral home in Germany.  Now a bit of every Mom in this family is firmly planted at our family Homestead.

Beyond, dare I say it, pie and pork roast and projects sometimes the horizon is hazy.  It’s all too easy to get caught up in the to dos and forget the feel’s.  Somehow that skinny lilac reaching down into the ground, along with every fencepost we drive and every amendment we enrich this ground with, make me look down and feel myself digging roots through the heavy soil.  My soul is reaching to the sun while my heart quietly snakes down and out creating a firm toehold here.  I am becoming of this place and am ready to leaf out and shade this special homestead.

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