Last Sunday’s lovely rainy day restored my sanity. Just a day without blazing sun was a big relief. I spent the morning picking food and the afternoon preparing it.

I hauled out the Squeezo Strainer and processed seven quarts of tomato juice. I had enough left over to make a sauce with all of my own vegetables — peppers, onions, carrots, basil, parsley and garlic. I have a wonderful life!

Then, because I picked quite a few unripe tomatoes – some very green, I fried up some with an egg and flour batter in some peanut oil. Even Violet, who hates tomatoes, loved these.

Blooming cardoon – with honeybees inside the flower. — Violet Southwick

The next day, I put the leftovers on a pizza out of the aforementioned sauce on Boboli bread. It’s always handy to have some of the Boboli in the freezer, especially now since I go food shopping so seldom.

Violet took a picture of the Squeezo Strainer so you can see and I won’t have to describe it.

This week, she also took a couple shots of my blooming cardoon – one with honeybees inside the flower.

Cardoon, a cousin of the artichoke, is a perennial in my garden and also reseeds. You can see a couple in the large boxes surrounding the picnic tables at the Katama General Store. I always have plenty of babies in the spring if you want to ring me around April or May. I’m the only Irons in the book.

We’ve been busy on the job sites, when we are not watering or dead-leafing the daylilies. It is a daunting task but well worth the effort. The plants still look good after the ugly flower stocks are removed.

My friend, Fala, brought over a couple slices of yummy apple pie. She picked the apples from her own espaliered trees. They were crispy and delicious.

For those of you who did not grow up in the 1950s, the following is difficult to comprehend. A popular dessert item at potlucks and church suppers was mock apple pie. It had no apples but the usual spices and lemon juice poured over – I’m not kidding – Ritz crackers. It was usually served with Cool Whip. It was not a culinary delight and the texture left room for improvement.

How I digress!

Find a couple of cardoons at the Katama General Store. — Violet Southwick

I’ve noticed quite a bit of mildew on the monarda but not on the phlox this year. It usually happens in the hot, humid weather. The ground is dry but the air is wet. I’ve been cutting some of it right to the ground. It’s so unattractive and never fear, they will be back next year. They tend to spread as do all members of the mint family.

What a week once again. The bipartisan Republican-led Senate Intelligence Committee came out with a 1,000-page report. It goes even further than the Mueller Report. It confirms that there was no “hoax.” The Trump campaign did get help from the Russians and lied under oath about it. This included perjury by our president in the written answers to Robert Mueller. So what! The Trumpies will deny, deflect and dismiss as is their custom.

What a week, on the other hand, for American women. We have the new vice-president nominee, Kamala Harris. Michelle Obama threw serious shade against D.J.T. in her D.N.C. speech.

Finally, Dr. Jill Biden gave a picture of the normalcy of the Biden family and the anxiety we are all experiencing about the school openings. The setting for her speech in an empty classroom said it all.

It’s Wednesday morning as a write, so I am looking forward to the next two nights with the Democrats.