Misty’s Disappearing Act

Last week was a difficult one. It started with having to euthanize Opal, and it didn’t get much better from there. On Wednesday I went out to my vegetable garden to collect the first ripe tomatoes and got stung by a paper wasp. I’m not usually allergic to stings, but this time my foot swelled up… and then my hands… and then over the course of the day I watched as hives spread across my body. It was never so bad as to affect my breathing, but it was far from pleasant. I’ve been warned (by one of my readers who knows about such things) that the next time I get stung it will likely be worse. So, my garden gate remained open and the tomatoes and cucumbers that I threw into the air when I yelled and ran remained on the ground.

veg garden


Steve was out of town, so there was no one to send in there to get the vegetables. But that didn’t mean that the yard had to be totally abandoned. I let the hens out.

Most of the girls stay on the lawn and scratch in the flower beds. Not Misty. She gets that gleam in her eye that I imagine she inherited from her Jungle Fowl ancestors.

where to


Misty sped off to the pumpkin patch that has gone to weeds and flowers while I let the soil rest this year.



There she is. See her?



Now you don’t.

gone hen


The problem is that while all of the other hens come when I call, Misty does not. I wasn’t about to wade into the weeds and chance upon a wasp nest. I waited safely on the grass. Finally, she remembered that she isn’t a wild thing and that the shaking of the scratch grain container means good things, even better than what her foraging brings.

I didn’t let the hens out again until this man came. Organic pest control. He suited up, bagged the wasp nest hidden in the vegetable garden and took it away.

pest guy


I harvested tomatoes last night. And one huge zucchini that I gave to the hens.


  1. So glad that she made it home safely! I thought the story was going to end on a sad note. I hope your swelling goes down and hives clear up. With summer comes nasty bugs and winter nasty snow and ice…

  2. So glad you and Misty are both okay, stings can be very nasty. Will update on Maggie tomorrow, keeping my fingers crossed trying everything…:)

  3. I “suit up” whenever I’m in the veggie garden, although not because of wasps, but because every single time I come in contact with tomato plants, I get incredibly itchy. My standard outfit this year in addition to my gardening gloves and shoes is an old pair of yoga pants (long) and an old men’s dress shirt I picked up from the Salvation Army Thrift Store for $1.25. Yes, it does get rather warm when wearing my garb (minutes within putting it on, I can feel the sweat start to run between my shoulder blades), but it makes it much easier for me to reach through plants to nab tomatoes–plus no insane itching afterwards!

    • Have you thought of trying the cheap all in one decorators overalls, they are thin and won’t make you as hot. I make mine last all season, very easy to put on and off. Might be worth a try..:)

  4. You need to keep Benadryl on hand. My allergist highly recommends the ones that look like breath mint strips that dissolve on the tongue. The problem is you need scissors to open the packs. But as soon as you get bit/stung by something questionable, two go on the tongue. They can help lessen the reaction and give you time to react or get to the ER.

    It might also be time to have two epinephrine auto-injectors on hand. Because I can speak from personal experience that YES, if you had a reaction that bad this time, the next time will probably be worse.

  5. Holy crap! SOOOOO glad you’re alright! My cousin kept bees for awhile and nearly died when she suddenly became allergic to their sting. Definitely nothing to mess around with.

    Benadryl is a wonderful thing.

  6. Sorry you have had such a rough week. Last Sunday I got stung by something and by Monday had a temperature of 101.5. It can be terrible. It took until about Wednesday when I was finally back on my feet. I miss winter and living bug free.

  7. Wasps pack a whollop. Glad to hear it wasn’t worse. Looks like Misty was intent on having a good time (maybe she has a secret place in there :)

  8. Oh my gosh. I’m glad you are ok. Yes, Amy’s suggestion of Benadryl sound like a good one, or even an epi-pen. Next time could be serious. I can’t believe you managed to get pictures while all this was happening. That’s dedication!

  9. Amy is right: you need an EpiPen. I’ve had one bout of anaphylactic shock and it’s very frightening. You have about fifteen minutes from the incident to where you can’t breathe. Benadryl isn’t strong enough for me, though it might help some people.

    By the way, after anaphylactic shock where all your tissues swell up from the fluid which seeps out of your blood (causing your blood pressure to drop and your throat to swell), you’ll look very peculiar for about three days. If you live. Tell your doctor and carry the EpiPen.

  10. Oh man, poor you. So sorry you’ve had such a miserable time of it lately. Good wishes to you from New York and fingers crossed that the rest of the summer is uneventfully fantastic for you!

  11. wow! it’s not hard for me to hate summer just because ofall the stinging,biting,itching,buzzing and allergies goingon. my favorite, fervent prayer is for an early frost and i start indulging in that along about april.
    i always say that the only thing that makes summer endurable is the eating – i do love sweet corn.
    i’ll bet the hens do, too. do you raise any of that – have never heard you mention it – the goats would enjoy it, too
    do be cautious until frost happens . take care!