Those 7 to 10-inch pouring rains made things around here sloppy but in the small town of Cook, “our” town of 600, things took a turn for the worse. The Little Fork River, which flows through town overflowed its banks severely, flooding out most of the town. In parts, there was more than 3 feet of water in streets and yards, pouring down basements and entering lower homes. It was awful! The county had out huge rescue vehicles, evacuating folks and checking on others. Our little movie theater, The Comet, had water over halfway up the seats. Being a small town, folks helped those impacted, filling and hauling sandbags, moving furniture and appliances to higher spots, and bringing in drinking water.

Today, the water’s gone down enough that most of the streets and yards are normal but there are appliances, soggy furniture, and other debris on the street edges, waiting to be hauled off to the landfill. It’s going to take folks a long time to recover. And more rain is on the way. Wow, what a spring!

Our gardens suffered a few washouts, here and there, and are still very soft and wet. I’ve been trying to plant our last peppers but am worried we may not be able to get in the North Garden in time to plant our pumpkin crop that we sell to the local nursery, The Watering Can.

Despite all, our flower beds are cheering us up with their colors.

But the flowers continue trying to brighten our days. The peonies and iris are blooming with fantastic colors. Unfortunately, the darned deer came into the flower bed by the driveway, munching off all of the Asiatic lilies, just as they were budding out to bloom. But the front yard is all fenced and they haven’t breached that so far. The peonies and daylilies there are safe and growing larger by the day. We really need those colors, right now.

Luckily, deer don’t like iris!

— Jackie


  1. There has been a lot of flooding in Northen Iowa too. So far, we have stayed safe.

    I’m having a huge problem with rabbits. I fenced my garden with chicken wire, but they are still getting in somewhere. If I didn’t live in town, I’d be out there with a 22 rifle. Can’t do that in town!!

  2. Glad to hear you are basically OK. The news and photos about Cook are sad..Will say a prayer. Daughter in West Michigan was in area where a 70 mph wind storm came off Lake Michigan and through the Muskegon area Monday AM. Still no power and many trees down. Too much challenging weather!

    • I’ll say! The Cook flood has receded but boy do folks have a mess to clean up. The local pharmacy had 3′ of water inside. A total loss! Lots of folks had bad basement flooding and even indoor living space flooding. I feel so bad for them. Our prayers join yours.

  3. Prayers for your little town. I feel so bad for everyone affected by this. The loss must be heartbreaking, not to mention financially crippling. Your flowers are so beautiful. The blooms are enormous! The colors are stunning and just looking at them makes one’s heart happy. When things are going rough, something small like those pretty flowers can make it easier to endure. I sure hope you can get your pumpkins planted. I planted my melons in mineral tubs this year, but I didn’t have hundreds to plant, lol. I’m sure you will think of an alternative plan if necessary. Sending prayers for a blessed week.

    • Our prayers join yours for the Cook folks slammed by the flood. Luckily, our gardens have pretty much dried up so Will can get them re-tilled and planted. Better late than never. Who knows? We may have a late fall. One thing certain, if you don’t plant, you won’t have a harvest!

  4. Dear Jackie,
    I am so sorry to hear about your town. I have seen horrible flooding before, and I know what your friends will be going through.
    I always love your posts, even when I don’t reply. The flowers just make my day brighter, too. I had 5 special Cherokee Purple tomato plants by the back door. Those deer are not deterred by us or our house. They ate all 5 down to 4 inches of the root. I had them planted near my basil, thyme and oregano. But they by passed the spices and munched away on my tomatoes.
    I wish some of your rain could come here. We are drying out so badly. I will keep your and your town in my prayers.

    • I wish you could get some of our rain too. Those darned deer!! Ours have tons to eat but one doe insists she wants to eat my flowers in the front yard. Last night, I caught her in there and gently herded her out toward the main gate. Yep, there she went, hopping over a 4′ high wire gate I’d used for decoration. Trust her to find the one weak spot in our 6′ high fence. Today, I’ll remedy that. I hope the delphiniums recover!!

  5. Prayers for you and your neighbors (including the town of Cook).

    Naughty, Naughty deer. Makes one crave a nice deer steak, doesn’t it? LOL

    Hopefully you will get your pumpkins planted ASAP.

    We are under a heat advisory today (105+ with heat index). Actual temps are 99-101. Summers are long here with no A/C.

    • I got all the pumpkins planted yesterday. Boy, was I whipped!! I’m sure glad it’s not that hot here. I would melt!!

  6. Jackie, I am sorry to hear about Cook. When I saw the news last night about the dam that was going to fail in southern Minnesota, I thought about you but did not realize that your area was also suffering from the floods. Prayers to you and the community. It is so hard to clean up after flooding.

    Your yard looks beautiful. I wish we had more flowers now. Our irises bloomed in early May. The only thing we have are Echinacea, Rose of Sharon and some store bought annuals. We had a lot of rain in May and early June. In fact, we got our peppers in just two weeks ago (late for our area in eastern Kansas) because the ground was too wet. Now, there are huge cracks in the ground and we are having to water every day because of the heat.

    Once again, prayers to everyone suffering from the floods there.

    • Thanks for your prayers. They join ours. The weather’s been so crazy everywhere, it seems. We’re busy planting now because it’s going to rain again tomorrow. Whew!!!

  7. Oh I am so happy to see your post. I have had you and the family on my mind since hearing of the torrential rains and flooding up there. Thankful you’re okay. I will remember your community and you all in prayer.

    • Thanks Sheryl! We got flooding in our gardens but not severe. It washed out a few rows here and there, so I replanted. We’re blessed to be on a nice hill of gravel and rock, so flooding doesn’t worry us too much. Unfortunately, Cook is in a flood plain because of the Little Fork River flowing through it.

  8. Sorry to hear about Cook. Sounds like Jackson (SW MN) was hit very hard with flood too; and you’re opposite ‘corners’ of the state. Guess God is telling us all to keep preserving because sometime it will be our turn for flood, fire, wind, or drought.
    This oppressive humid heat continues, and is difficult to acclimate to. It feels like walking out the door, into a large, wet, warm washcloth, and not being able to escape it, except with air conditioning. Hope the power grid stays working.

    • Yep, Erin, the power is going out here and there because of flooding and storms. Being off grid, our power doesn’t rely on wires and poles. Thank God! And, yes, it does remind us to preserve and grow what we can because none of us knows what’s in the future.

  9. Jackie, I just googled Cook and the photos are devastating. Prayers for the entire city and surrounding area. Small town residents are strong and selfless.

    • Yes, they are. We’re so happy to have Cook as “our” town, even though it’s 14 miles away. The town is slowly recovering but boy, it’s going to be a rough recovery. That was a lot of water!!!


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