Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The Thanksgiving Challenge Post 12: Rain Barrel Wealth

When I woke up this morning the sweet sound of rain was filling the room with comfort. No thunder, no lightening, very little wind...just the raindrops beating down on the roof and rolling off through the gutters to the rain barrels. It is absolutely amazing how much water can be collected from just a short rainfall. I remember hearing my mother talking about using rain water to rinse her hair. This was of course before conditioners in every fruit and flower known to man was on the shelves of even grocery stores. You know, lavender and chamomile, mango and blueberry...some of the descriptions of these conditioners could be mistaken for an entree at dinner, or a dessert.

We have our rain barrels set up to catch the water to tend to plants. Any water we save now will be used all winter long as needed so that we don't have to hook up hoses. I have been known to awaken in the middle of the night wondering if I disconnected a hose. Why worry? Well, in the event of a freeze, you run the risk of broken pipes if the hose isn't curled happily on the ground. And yes, I've actually gotten up in the middle of the night to make sure. I stood on the porch this morning and peered down towards where the barrels are and saw that water is up to the tops of both of them. We're set for a while. I'm so thankful that my mother showed us how to set up a rain barrel system. It has saved us countless dollars over the years. And since it's rainwater, the plants are not shocked by chlorine or other chemicals and what we call organic, is truly organic. I'm sure the rain will be gone by nightfall, but in the meantime, I intend to enjoy the blessings that it is bringing. I think I may curl up with a good book later...or a game of Scrabble. In the mean time, I'm just thankful that the rain barrels are doing their job.

In honor of Veterans Day, I hope you will read this beautiful poem which so eloquently points out just what our Veterans have done for us to protect our freedoms.

In Flanders Fields
By: Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, MD (1872-1918)
Canadian Army

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

In Flanders Field - Copy of Signed Original


29 comments:

Lee said...

Sandi if I ever get you to Texas I'll take you to the Austin Wildflower Research Center that has every building and walkway designed to catch rain runoff and recycle it to the gardens. My grandmother had a rain barrel too and she even pulled water from it to wash her hair when I was young. Good reason to give thanks for having a family that raised us in good ways.

Hugs,
Lee

menopausaloldbag (MOB) said...

I don't think the rain water is so free of chemicals and other acids here in Europe! We collect water too and as we have just had a water meter installed I guess we will be collecting even more! I wish I had your green fingers.

Finding Pam said...

We use to collect rain water, but have not set it up since our move.

The poem was great. I think of our soldiers today and pray for them.

Blessings,
Pam

NitWit1 said...

Rain barrels are becoming common every where, and prices are falling.

If we'd had barrels out during this year, we'd have to have a bunce of back ups!!!

I memorized that poem when I was in school.

Hilary said...

I like the idea of collecting rain water.. thanks for sharing this.

Thanks also for posting In Flanders Fields. I'm pleased to find many fine Remembrance Day (so named in Canada) posts across the blogosphere.

Donna said...

We need a rain system!
Happy Veterans day!!hughugs

Sandy said...

I can close my eyes and see, to this day, my grandmother's farm. There were many rainbarrels. There is nothing like rainwater to wash your hair -- no conditioner needed! Soft, shiny hair guaranteed!

Thank you to all soldiers - both active and retired! ♥

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

I loved rain barrels when I was a kid. My sister and I always used rain water to washour hair and it would be so soft.

lailani said...

Thanks for posting the poem - great!

We have a rain barrel that we dip from and then a large plastic planter that I have ended up using too. I noticed a house in the neighborhood has some set up on stands on the side of the house - my guess is to hook hoses up to. Annnnnd, I read an online article at sunset.com about rain barrels earlier this year . . . did you know that in some states it is illegal to collect rain water? Colorado I believe, something along the lines that it is state property. Another state had an area that it to was illegal, said it interfered with feeding the local ponds and tirbutaries . . . left me a little dumbfounded.

Mary Isabella and Kiley too! said...

A very good Veterans Day post. I remember how pourd my Grandmother was of her husband and son serving our country. She always bought the little poppies....m.

Protege said...

I am very familiar with the barrels that collect rain water; my aunt had one in her cottage and I used to always look into the water in the summers, as a child.;))
Beautiful poem; many post this one today.;)
xo

Kanak Hagjer said...

I collect rainwater too and use it for my plants. Reminds me...we haven't had rain for a while. Your post made me long for the sound of rain on the roof, the smell of rain-soaked earth and all that.

I went through your older posts and loved reading Thanksgiving Challenge posts. Glad to know you feel better and happy that you stopped by my blog.

We learned this poem in school back in the 70's. I still remember some lines....

♥Mimi♥ said...

What a lovely Veteran's Day tribute. Thank you so much. Also, your memories of the rain barrel were so precious. Sharing those reminded me that the most simple of gifts can be the most treasured.

Shadow said...

great poem, perfect on this day of rememberance

Shadow said...

great poem, perfect on this day of rememberance

gaelikaa said...

I love the rain too, Sandy! The poem was beautiful!

Sally said...

Your posts always bring a smile to my face, Sandi. ((((hugs))))

Nessa said...

Thank-you, Veterans.

Wordless Wednesday

jabblog said...

We set up three rain barrels when 'drought' was threatened; they have overflowed ever since!!
I love that poem - very evocative and if you ever visit the war graves, particularly those from the First World War, the tears will flow - three soldiers in one grave - 'known only unto God' - extraordinary . . .

Gill - That British Woman said...

such a beautiful poem...

Gill in Canada

david mcmahon said...

My mother taught me that poem when I was VERY little. I learnt so much about writing and life itself from what my parents taught me - just as you and Mac would have.

We could do with some of your rain, Sandi. We're in a heatwave here, the hottest start to November in a century.

Jeni said...

Strangely enough, as much as my Grandfather gardened -both vegetables and flowers -I don't recall him ever having any kind of rain barrel set up in/around the property. Hard to believe he didn't do that as he took great pride in his flowers as well as the foods he grew too.
And the poem -I wonder how many of the generation below us and the one working it's way up through the school system now -have ever even heard of this piece? Back in our school days, someone ALWAYS was assigned to read that poem every Veteran's Day for the school program that day. Always!

ancient one said...

Do the rain barrels draw mosquitos in the summer? Or do you just use them in winter? It was raining yesterday afternoon, all through the night and all day today and is still raining... left over storm Ida... the weather men are saying we should get between 5 to 7 inches before it is done...

Loved the poem..

cheshire wife said...

I had never seen that poem before. Now I have seen it on two blogs in five minutes. What neat writing the poet had.

sandy said...

a thank you of pure purity

Jeanne said...

I love waking to the rain too, especially when there's nothing dragging me out of that nice comfy bed. Glad you're getting some needed wet and enjoyed that rainbarrel story. Have a new picture of Oliver on my blog for you. hehe

lisaschaos said...

I've never tried rain water on my hair - interesting idea.

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Sandi: So beautifully posted both the rain barrel and the letter.

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