Our Little Yard Guest

yard guest

We are in the process of redoing my mother-in-laws front, back and side yards. And there is a ton of work to do, after years of neglect due to age and health, Royce and I have tackled something we may not be prepared to do. But, we’re totally committed so new fences to new grass and plants are going in over three growing seasons. There is so much to do it will take that long! This year is the first season of our renovations for her. We are beginning by focusing on the lawn. In the Texas panhandle this is a tall order, apparently, especially when her old lawn has laid dormant for nearly ten years. The only spot to show any old growth after a month of watering is this small patch in the middle of the back yard. We are still waiting for the grass seed to sprout (fingers crossed it does — we’ve had more than the average amount of sand storms this season so our neighbors just may be the proud recipient of a new lawn!) This morning Royce mowed this one little patch of grass and this afternoon an extremely plump bunny settled in and feasted on the clippings.  I think I’d best put a fence around the newly planted garden!

garden Yes, folks that is red clay and sand in them there rows! But we have corn, beans, squash, tomatoes, sweet basil, peppers, okra, red onions and even some flowers here and there.

I’m also putting in a few flower/hardscaps beds in around her long front porch and upgrading some furniture she has out there. Early mornings and late afternoons, Royce and I love setting on her front porch and watching all the birds and rabbits — that our dog Spike chases out of the yard — enjoying each others company and the ever present Texas plains breeze.



Snapshot of a small Texas Town

In my humble opinion small towns are the most wonderful places to live. Shallowater, Texas is such a place. It is a place where people call you by your first name proceeded by a Mr. or a Ms. — “Well a big howdy to you Mr. Royce” “It’s a beautiful day Ms. Marilu” … Yes, somehow (if only to me) living life in a small town is better and kinder on the soul. The air is cleaner and the ground is smoother under your feet. Even if there are a mountain of weeds and some pretty large tumbleweeds to contend with around here, I prefer it here over larger communities. Oh, and yes and the wind! Oh, my word, the wind can blow me over at times. I wasn’t quite prepared for this, actually. Last Sunday was a beautiful day, Royce and I were setting on the porch swing taking it all in when the wind (and accompanying sand) blew us back inside. But, every place has its goods and not so goods about it. So I adjusted and decided to fall in love with the goods, and ignore the not so goods, as in more colours of brown than green, the bloody dust storms, tumbleweeds and dryer humidity than I am use to. Besides, the goods really do outweigh the not so goods. Where else on this planet could I find as many wonderful folks to call my new friends than I have found here. So, I think we’ll stay put for a time here in Shallowater and I’ll continue to focus on the positive.

Shallowater is a city in Lubbock County, Texas, United States. Shallowater is on U.S. Route 84 and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe line, 12 miles (19 km) northwest of Lubbock. The population was 2,484 at the 2010 census.[2] It is part of the Lubbock Metropolitan Statistical Area. Shallowater is located on the high plains of the Llano Estacado which lies at the southern end of the Western High Plains ecoregion of the Great Plains of North America.

We just call it the lower Texas Panhandle here in these parts and expect everyone to know what we are talking about!

250px-Relief_map_of_Texas256px-LlanoEstacadoShadedRelief300px-Northwest_Escarpment_Llano_Estacado_2003 This gives you a view of the Llano Estacado Region. As you can see it is wedged in the panhandle region (near Lubbock) and the area is rather flat with sparse vegetation, and with a lot of Tumbleweeds and Mesquite trees.

our m tree

This lovely Mesquite is one of several we have on the property. It has yet to leaf out but I can see signs of life.

A traveler driving down highway 84 to the south of Shallowater might not notice that they are passing by this little town. In actuality, it is a tiny pen-point on a large map. But if they were to notice and stop I think the few minutes it takes to tour our little downtown area would please them and might even give them a dose of nostalgia as they looked at some of these old abandoned buildings  .. I am always wondering what went on in those buildings one hundred years ago. My soon-to-be mother-in-law Ruth is quick to fill me in on a few of them. These days the businesses that thrive here in Shallowater do so because we Shallowaterians frequent them to make sure their doors remain open! It’s nice that I don’t need to drive the short trip into Lubbock to pick up a gallon of milk, or fill the tank with petrol and the shop keepers here are so friendly you want to shop here. So, if the traveler moving down Highway 84 took the time to stop I’m sure s/he’d be impressed by — if nothing else — the friendliness of the folks here.

So, if you are ever in my neck of the woods traveling down Highway 84 going east to west — just a stones throw outside the city limits of Lubbock — don’t blink. Don’t miss our little town of Shallowater. Stop. Stop and grab some apples to nibble on your way to somewhere else.


4 Corners Mart in Shallowater, Texas


Here’s a picture of those enticing apples to nibble



Of course if you are in need of a bandage because you touched your hot tail pipe like I did once a stop here>>>1514415_10151871245281404_1748970320_n 1013297_10151870522861404_1113691499_nmight do you good. The Shallowater Clinic with adjoining pharmacy would surely take care of you as if you belonged here. And that’s a promise.

Or perhaps (i-am thinking outside the box here) but what if the poor traveler’s hair is a mess — in that case I’d suggest pulling off Highway 84 and into Sweet Currey Salon.


Sweet Currey. You can get your hair and nails done at this shop for slim pic-kins to your pocket.


See, they do a wonderful job! This is me on the 40th Anniversary of my 29th Birthday (somehow it seems kinder to my soul to think this way) …. Sweet Currey did a marvelous job.


A few other places of interest will be talked about in next weeks post, if I get around to it. index

Then again I might talk about Shiann — for she is needing to be talked about.


Shiann is the most adorable #11 grandchild I have!