Sunday, April 16, 2017

1001 Posts!

I didn't realize it, but apparently, yesterday's post was my 1,000th post!  Wow!  For someone who thought she didn't have a lot to say, I seem to have said plenty! 

My day began when I woke up at 8:00 a.m. to take my antibiotic.  Unlike yesterday, however, I went back to sleep and had one of my weird, convoluted dreams, in which I was riding in a bus in Australia (I've never been to Australia in real life, but in my dream, that's where I was, with cousins who live there), trying to buy fried fish for my mother's lunch!  It was a frustrating sort of dream because I couldn't get the fried fish!  Then, suddenly, I woke up with a start, and it was 10:00 a.m., already!


I spent a fairly relaxed morning, having a cup of coffee, replying to comments on my blog, and reading and commenting on other blogs.  Brunch was a scrambled egg and hash browns.  I was tempted to have a waffle, but it seemed a lot of work.  I don't know why peeling and cutting a potato into small cubes and finely dicing some onion for hash browns seemed less work than mixing up batter for waffles, but, there you are, that seems to be how I think!  Maybe it is because I would have had to make a strawberry syrup, with frozen strawberries, to go with the waffles, since I still don't like the taste of the regular bottled pancake syrup (not pure maple syrup) I buy from the grocery store.  While the potato was cooking, I also sliced up the rest of the onion and froze it for future use.  Weekday meal preparations go faster for me when I have already peeled and sliced onions in the freezer.


After brunch, I stripped the bed and washed the bed sheets and a few other things to make a load.  It has been hung to dry.  If the sheets dry by tonight, I will make the bed with them, to avoid having to fold them!  If not, I will make the bed with the other set of cotton sheets (I've two sets of cotton sheets and one set of flannel sheets for my bed). 


While the sheets were washing, I went to water the vegetable seeds I had planted.  Some of them are germinating! 


The patty pan squash: there were eight seeds and so far, one has germinated!




Patty Pan Squash Seedling


The zucchini squash: there were five seeds and one has germinated!  On Friday, it looked how the patty pan seedling is looking like in the picture, above, but today, it has grown to seedling status!

Zucchini

The bean seeds are starting to germinate, too:



Bean Sprout


 And I've at least one okra seedling!

Okra Seedling


And then, I started on what turned out to be an exercise in frustration!

Chicken Wire Mesh
I decided to try to fix the chicken wire around the vegetable plot!  I took four pieces of leftover hardwood (oak) flooring I had in the garage and encountered the first frustration - they are of different lengths and only two were nice and long.  But I found several medium length ones which would work well enough.  Then, I tried to hammer nails into them to hold the chicken wire.  The metal posts I saw at the store had hooks into which the wire mesh would go to hold it in place, so I tried to use some finishing nails I had on hand to make similar hooks.  Well, that sort of worked, but not as well as I would have liked.  The nails bent before I had been able to drive them in far enough and some kept falling out!  I think a stapling gun would have worked better, or, perhaps, I need a different kind of nail.

This One Sort of Worked

The Mesh Hooked on to the Nail


Then, I tried to dig the holes for the "posts".  Keep in mind that I am doing this all backwards, because the seeds have been planted and some are starting to germinate, so I am trying to dig the holes without disturbing the seeds!

   
The First Post in Place!


The second post kept falling over when I tried to wrap the mesh around it!  So I propped a cinder block against it to hold it in place!  Well, sort of!

Cinder Block to the Rescue!

The cinder block tends to topple over and it did just that, several times, to the detriment of the poor bean seeds that are trying to sprout!

Flattened by the Cinder Block!

By this time, it was almost 4:00 p.m. and the afternoon sun was getting too strong for me.  I have "sun sensitivity" due to my medications.  I had started out hammering the nails in the shade of the back roof overhang.  I had thought I'd stay in the shade throughout my project and hadn't put on any sun screen and I wasn't wearing a long sleeved top, either. I felt my face and arms getting hot and tingly, which is my sign that I've had too much sun.  And I was getting thirsty (I had already gone indoors to drink water once or twice before).  And frustrated.  It was becoming apparent to me that putting in the make-shift posts and stretching the wire mesh around them was a two-person job!  One to hold the post in place while the other stretched the mesh.  So, I "downed my tools" and came inside to wash my face and apply some cream to my arms!  

Later, after I had my tea and the sun went down, a bit, and I had rested, I went back and finished covering the plot!

All Fenced In!

Not the best job as the posts are too wobbly and the wire mesh has a tendency to curl after being rolled up in the package.  I am not sure how well it will hold up against a determined cat, but I am hoping it will hold up well enough, at least until Friday, when my gardener friend can help me better secure the posts and mesh.  I also threw another piece of mesh over the top to thwart any birds from pecking the seedlings!  Last time I planted beans, the mourning doves ate off all the seedlings!  I might hammer in two more pieces of wood, tomorrow, to help support the weight of the mesh I put on the top.   I then watered the poor seedlings - maybe the bean sprouts that got crushed will recover and come back up!


Need more support - the chicken wire is bending over for the weight of the mesh thrown on top

I also placed some additional cinder blocks and edging stones to anchor the bottom of the chicken mesh in order to deter any animals from creeping under it.  I used to have possums in the garden, and, occasionally, I've seen raccoons!  Of course, the raccoons will probably just knock the fence down without any problem!  I am just hoping that the cats won't.  By the time I did that and came in, it was almost 8 o'clock!   I was too tired to do anything else!

But I took a picture of the grape vines I bought yesterday:

Grape Vines
The one on the left is a seedless red grape, the one on the right is a seedless green grape.


Lemon Grass and Parsley
I should plant the lemon grass in the ground. 

In the evening, I called a couple of my friends and my neighbor S, across the street, to wish them for Easter and one of my aunts called, too.  Later, my neighbor S brought over dinner for me: 



Dinner from Neighbor

Clockwise from top left: Lavash (flat bread), dyed eggs and herbs (flat leaf parsley, basil, tarragon, spring onion), yogurt with grated cucumber, fried fish fillets, cheesy bread and puff pastry dough filled with spinach and cheese!

I had some of it for dinner and kept the rest in the fridge. 

Dinner

Basil and tarragon are not herbs I usually use when cooking, but I put some of the stems in water to see if they will root (although I read that tarragon is grown from either seeds or root divisions).  Well, if nothing else, the water will keep them fresh, longer. 



Basil and Tarragon


Today, I am grateful for:
- Little seedlings emerging from the seeds I planted
- Playing with the fencing material (even if it was frustrating at times!)
- My neighbor bringing me dinner
- Chatting with friends
- A sunny, warm day


 Weekend (and Beyond!) To Do List:
- Tidy the house - STARTED; Did the living room
- Dust
- Vacuum
- Change bed sheets - DONE
- Load of laundry - DONE
- Paperwork
- Office work - DONE
- Daily tasks (dishes, litter box, etc.) - DONE
- Plant some of the new succulents
- Buy wire mesh and some wood for stakes - DONE; will use wood I have on hand
- Fence off the vegetable planting bed - DONE
- Library to return book - DONE

 Monday's To Do List:
- Go to the office
- Continue to tidy the house
- Dust
- Vacuum
- Paperwork
- Plant some of the new succulents
- Empty the waste baskets/kitchen trash
- Take trash cans to the curb
- Water the seedlings/calendula, etc.

How was your Sunday?  Do you have a holiday tomorrow?  What are your plans for Monday?

16 comments:

  1. Wow! My dear I am totally gobsmacked by your blog post. You are amazing and so determined. Did you know that your neighbor S was bringing over dinner? How nice is that and after your day of hard work much needed.

    We had a lovely weekend and our Easter lunch/dinner turned out quite nice. I ended up having both ham and chicken, sending most of the left ham home with my daughter along with the left over yellow sponge cake and strawberries. The grands love to play board games and it is always such fun. One more year and the oldest will be away to university. Just seems like he was born yesterday.

    Easter Monday is not a holiday here and unlike when my children were growing up they have zero time off from school. The schools have substituted a Spring break to replace the time they used to have off at Easter. It makes me a bit sad.

    I have the second load of laundry in and am slowing putting our home back to normal. I will probably take a "long" rest this afternoon as I am tired from the weekend.

    Didn't comment before but so pleased your Rx is agreeing with you. Take care.

    Sandy

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    1. LOL, Sandy, thank you! "Where there's a will, there's a way" and so forth! No, I didn't know she was bringing me dinner until 5 minutes prior, when she called to ask if I was home and that she was bringing me something. It was most welcome, of course.

      I am so glad you had a nice Easter with your family. Sharing good food and playing board games with the grand children sound perfect. Hope you'll take it easy and rest in between putting the house back to normal. Take care, Sandy, and have a lovely day.

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  2. Happy belated 1,000th post, Bless!

    I laughed and laughed at your antics with the chicken wire as it is totally what I would have done too, hahaha. My nemesis are the squirrels more than anything. I was so mad last year when they dug out and ate almost all my tomato seedlings! And then the peanuts too, of course. For a couple of years I had used some mesh tents sold by Gardener's Supply to protect my plants but they are pretty expensive and don't fare well in the harsh Florida sun. Last year I bought some light rebar, bent it in a U shape (like a tunnel), and put it upside down over my plants and then draped some screening material over it, using bender clips to hold it in place and then bricks to hold the bottom portion on the ground. It worked pretty well and I can reuse those again as the screening material held up really well. The rebar and the binder clips are rusted but that's OK.

    The food in the picture is making me salivate! Yum!

    I hope you have a great day today, Bless... and that the neighborhood cats stay away from your cute little seedlings! I'm going to be so jealous when your zucchini start growing, I've never been able to grow a zucchini. Squash doesn't seem to fare well down here.

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    1. Thank you, Nathalie! I remember the lengths to which you went to keep those squirrels out! Later, I was thinking I should have invested $10 and bought four of the metal posts, they might have been easier to sink into the ground, but I am so used to trying to make do and use what I have, that I'd have felt guilty if I just bought the posts without first giving what I had a try. I am kind of silly, that way.

      I am hoping with all my might that the cats and the birds stay away and that my plants will grow and actually produce some vegetables before the summer heat burns them! I also need to start my tomato seeds or else, it will be too late to plant them (they won't produce when it gets to the 90s and 100s).

      Hope you have a good day, too, Nathalie. Is it going to be a Domestic Monday for you?

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    2. It's... semi Domestic Monday :) I've made my bed and done the laundry and I've worked in the garden. Aside from that, I've been enjoying the patio and the bird calls. I think that's quite domestic, don't you think?

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    3. I think that's enough domesticity for what is still considered a holiday in several other parts of the world! In fact, that is the excuse I am giving myself for deciding to work from home, today! LOL.

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  3. Wow! After a relaxing morning you were certainly busy! I have to get started on planning the garden. I haven't decided how much I'm going to do after a lot was eaten by the deer last year. I do so love the taste of fresh vegetables from the garden though!

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    1. Mornings seem to be the hardest time of day for me to get going; once afternoon rolls around, I'm ready to get busy, unless I'm taking nap on the sofa! It's 6 of one and half a dozen of the other, some days!

      I saw something called "deer mesh" at the garden center, the other day. I don't know how effective it is, but perhaps your stores might have something similar? Or maybe you'll need to make a deer-sized enclosure similar to mine?!

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  4. This evening I heard a very similar story from my sister about a wire contraption she was trying to make for her garden and how the wire kept curling back up, etc. Great minds must thing alike. Or great minds are stubborn. I'm not sure which. :)

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    1. I hope your sister was successful in her efforts. It was definitely a two-person job, I think, and quite a challenge to do it on my own, especially with the make-do posts. But the thing is still in place, so I am encouraged.

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  5. Congratulations on your 1001th post! Your chicken wire antics bought a smile to my face as I had similar experience when I was trying to make a bean trellis last year with chicken wire! Like you I was trying to cut costs with using bit of wood I had for the posts, I had to go and buy some in the end! lol. Your seedlings are wonderful, I have been lazy and have bought seedlings from the market, but at $1.50 a punnet it is not too bad, I am growing kale, coriander, celery and broccoli for my winter garden. My neighbour uses old cd discs hanging from wires to stop birds getting her crops, it seems to work, but looks rather hilarious, but is a good talking point! My Monday was wonderful caught up with some elderly neighbours and had a quiet time reading and crocheting. Today has been hectic, so its soup for my supper and to bed!

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    1. Well, so far, so good - the fence is staying up! The $1.50 for seedlings isn't a bad price, at all. They seem to cost at least double, if not more, over here! But, I might just go an buy a few, in the next week or so. I've tried using the old cd discs to keep the birds out of the old peach tree (before it died), but they didn't seem to work! Sounds like you had a lovely Monday. Sorry today was hectic! Take care of yourself.

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  6. I'm always amazed by how much you manage to achieve in general and now you've done over 1000 posts! I don't think I've even done 30. I hope your fencing does the trick. Mine has worked so far. X

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    1. Thanks, Jules. So far, it is staying in place! The one you made is well thought out and executed! I think, if I made one like that, the stray cats would want to sleep on top of it! LOL. I am seeing a new cat in my back yard, recently. It is all white and very pretty; it belongs to one of my neighbors across the street, but it is hanging out more in my yard than in his!

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  7. I am reading your blog post backward [as I missed a few]..ha Well, no wonder you were aching ..You worked TOO hard. smile.
    Proud you got the wire up.. Hope the birds leave it alone. Your seedlings looks so pretty and healthy..

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    1. LOL; maybe I did a bit too much! The fencing seems to be working, so far!

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