Where I live, farmer’s markets are all the rage. You can find one in several nearby suburban towns to the east every weekend of the month. But head west in the other direction toward the country and you’ll find a place that trumps all of these wonderful farmer’s markets, hands down. I’m talking about Wiltse’s Farm Market located a mere 5 miles from my house. They have amazing fresh-picked produce at great prices. This past Saturday I took a trip to Wiltse’s to get some veggies and fruits and came home with plenty, along with a bunch of beautiful snapdragons.
Snapdragons hold a very special place in my heart. My grandmother grew these in her flower garden every year. She had a cutting garden overflowing with snapdragons and the most amazing mums and marigolds. She liked sunny colored flowers.
So when I saw this big bunch of summer snapdragons at the farm market for just $3, I had to have them. I was a bit surprised at the pleasant emotion that welled up inside me when I saw them and thought of my grandmother, who we called Mimi. She passed away about 10 years ago but the memories of her are still fresh in my mind and heart.
Mimi and PawPaw (my grandfather) lived in PawPaw, Illinois. As a kid, I would often spend a week or more with them during the summer. They owned and lived on a Christmas tree farm, where people could choose their tree and cut it down, or have my grandfather cut it down for them. It was a magical place to me.
Mimi would have fresh cut flowers in her home every day, including summer snapdragons like this. She had no formal floral training but she could arrange the prettiest centerpieces and I know my love of flowers comes from her.
Lately I’ve had a strong desire to move to a farmette where I could have my own cutting gardens, a barn or two, and a little more space. I think memories of my time spent at Mimi and PawPaw’s house is driving this desire. I find myself wanting to recreate the childhood experiences.
For now, I have to settle with visiting farms like Wiltse’s. I’m not sure I’ll ever move to a farmette but it’s a nice dream to have. If anyone offered to buy my house, I’d probably sign on the dotted line and move a little further out in the country.
My white mismatched dishes seem to be a perfect match with the snapdragons and I think Mimi would like this place setting. She suffered from Alzheimer’s and now my mother has Alzheimer’s too … so I’m probably doomed to the same fate.
The white glasses with the bunches of grapes on them are identical to the ones my grandma had. I found them at the flea market last year and snatched them all up. Every time I see them I buy a couple more. I almost have a full set of 12 now.
I was so happy to find these summer snapdragons at Wiltse’s this weekend! I need to add them to my flower garden. Is there a particular flower that reminds you of your grandmother whenever you see it?