After a morning at the farmers market, Peeper and I spent most of the afternoon out in the backyard, enjoying a beautiful summer day.
We plan to have a veggie garden again this year, but so far, we’ve done pretty much nothing toward making that happen. We did start some tomato and pepper seeds about three weeks ago, but I think that between a certain someone enthusiastically watering them, and then some torrential rains when we put them outside (to stop the watering in the sunroom), I’m pretty sure they’ve been washed away.
So, today we went to the county Master Gardeners’ plant sale, and got some tomato, squash and eggplant plants. I was hoping for peppers, but all they had left were the hot ones. So, we still need to get those, and seeds for carrots, pumpkins and sunflowers. That’ll probably be about it. Maybe watermelon?
After we picked out our plants, we took a little wander around the gardens and surrounding area. Lovely.
Christmas is over and the new year is around the bend so now, of course, it’s time to obsess about “getting my shit together.” Again.
We’ve made lots of plans about things we want to do around the house, starting with getting rid of a lot of stuff that we don’t need, much of which nobody needs.
We know that we can’t tackle it all at once, and we’re hoping to not burn ourselves out, by taking it slow and making baby steps in the right direction. It won’t get better overnight, but every little thing we do will make things a little better, and a little closer to how we’d like things to be around here.
This weekend, I made my first concrete step toward that, and cleaned my desk, inside and out. I didn’t take an actual “before” photo, but if you look over Peeper’s shoulder in this old photo, you can see a very small part of the mess. I think you can get the general idea. It was pretty awful.
Here’s the wide view. I’ve gotten the main surface cleared off several times in the past, but I don’t know when got rid of the piles of “don’t know what to do with it, so I’ll just shove it under here” stuff, or when I last tackled the top.
Almost everything you see here is things that I actually use fairly regularly. The shoebox under the hutch is a few items that need to move to the “things to keep forever” box, when I make room in it.
I’m pretty sure that I’ve never actually decluttered inside the hutch, although I have straightened up in there a few times. How long has it been? This side held all my computer stuff, including drivers and documentation for devices I no longer own – including some on floppy disk; yep, that’s save to trash. I thought the Windows 2000 installation disks were bad, but there was also a book called “Getting Started With Windows 97.” No more.
The other side held “officey” sort of things, most of which I had no use for. Much better. All the “I need this in reach” binders and such are neatly filed in here.
And, why yes, you do see a ziplock containing a roll of 35 mm film and three disposable cameras. Those should be interesting to see, when I finally get around to getting them developed. (I am told there is a camera shop in town that still does that.)
Not pictured: A box of things to redistribute around the house, a box to give away, a box to go to the basement, and about seven garbage bags, headed to the curb.
After only getting two carrots from our garden last year, we are making up for it with a bumper crop!
We put a whole packet of seeds in a 2’x2′ bed, and didn’t thin them at all, so there’s just a solid forest of carrot-tops to choose from.
We used the “Kaleidoscope Mix” again, which includes seeds for several different colors of carrot, and so far we’ve pulled some orange, yellow, red and white. Maybe a green. Oh, and one tiny purple earlier in the summer.
I don’t think any of them have made it into the house. We just pull them up, rinse them off in the hose, and Peeper chomps them.
What a beautiful day!
Shrike, Peeper and I spent most of it out in the yard, getting our garden started. We’ve been composting since probably 2004 or 2005 and for the first time, we were able to use our own compost (plus last year’s soil, plus peat moss) for everything. We might have to buy a bit for the potatoes that we’ve yet to plant, but we had enough to do 20 square feet of raised beds, plus a window box and the circle for the sunflower house.
Planted: Carrot (multicolor), watermelon (sugar baby), cantaloupe (rock something-or-other) and sunflower (3 different sized mixes), spinach (I have no idea, it’s an old packet with the top trimmed off, probably won’t even sprout) seeds.
Transplanted: Tomato (early girl – from Lowes) and Pumpkin (triple treat – started from seed)
Left to do: Start bellpepper seeds inside (Usually buy plants, but the Easter Bunny brought multi-color mix seeds), Plant potatoes (in cheapo laundry baskets not yet bought), buy and plant Mammoth Sunflower seeds amongst what’s already planted.
That’s less variety than we’ve grown the past couple of years, but we just joined the Fulton Farm CSA (half a share) so we figure since we’ll already be overrun with veggies, we should cut back on what we’re growing ourselves.
I shoveled a couple of wheel barrows full of compost from the bin (and Shrike shoveled another one or two) and dumped it on top of last year’s soil in the 4′ x 4′ and two 2′ x 2′ raised beds, along with a bunch of peat, and then did a whole lot of shoveling and pitchforking to mix it all up.
We also cut out some grass that’s regrown in the sunflower house circle (the perimeter of a circle, about 6′ in diameter) and dumped compost in it.
We also made a tomato cage / aluminum foil / pie pan scare-robin (my idea) for the sunflower house and a paper towel roll / peanut butter / birdseed feeder (Peeper’s idea) to lure them elsewhere.
This is the rest of the bird seed that we poured out for the feeder. Peeper put it out in the middle of the yard to lure the birds away from the sunflowers, then she added the stick “So they can have a seat and enjoy their snack.”
We’re going to convert our “tater tower” into two or three tater baskets, so when we buy those, we’ll have to shovel out the rest of that soil (took some of it for the sunflowers) and add some peat and compost and/or potting soil (probably store-bought) before planting those. That part shouldn’t be too hard, just a matter of getting it done.
That’s the most manual labor I’ve done in ages and I’m going to be one hurting mama tomorrow, but for now, I’m tired-in-a-good-way, freshly showered and starving with a couple of BOGO birthday coupons burning a hole in my inbox.