Grandpa picked up the phone and called around.
He wondered if anyone was interested in helping him dig up his potatoes ?
He knew that everyone was busy. If they couldn’t come, he would just take his time or try for another day. . .
sometime before the cold weather came and the ground froze.
The answer he got was yes and yes and yes.
Yes, we want to help. Yes, we will be right over. Yes, wait for us !
I found enough gloves for everyone.
They started at one end of the garden and worked their way to the other.
Grandpa had already removed the dead leaves and stems.
Soon, the potatoes filled two wagons.
They were all shapes and sizes.
And, this year they were red potatoes.
As soon as the pitchfork lifted the dirt and exposed the potatoes the competition began.
The children shouted “potato” as soon as they saw them
and scrambled to pick them up, run to the wagon and come back for more.
Maya would have liked to move in a more orderly manner
and take perfect turns but everyone else had only one speed:
Afton was also as quick as a whistle but she was a little older and often took her time
so that the younger children could pick up the potatoes first.
Tally was an expert at using the pitchfork.
He’s now taller than Grandpa and they are hiking buddies.
He jumped on it and drove it deep into the ground. He was determined to find every potato.
Not only were there tons of potatoes, there were spiders and worms.
Just like her mother, Olive never met a worm or any other living thing that she didn’t LOVE.
These were especially large worms in the potato patch.
She agreed to put them back in the dirt and find her own worms at home.
( I didn’t have to find a worm container and her mother didn’t have to remember to take them out of the car. )
Olive found a potato that looked just like Mickey Mouse.
Maya wasn’t sure what to think. She had never seen such a funny-shaped potato and one so little.
“Hold it”, said Olive.
“You keep it”, said Maya.
Worms and strange potatoes were not on Maya’s list today.
Later, Grandpa will sort the potatoes by size.
The little ones are the favorites. They are expensive in the store.
These potatoes are FREE.
He will put them in baskets in the cold garage and cover them with garden dirt and burlap bags.
They will last all winter and everyone is welcome to them
Lunch followed the work. Sandwiches, chips, apples and cookies.
Then it was time to dig up the last of the carrots and take them to the horses . . .
but that is for another post !