30 July 2001

Another productive day. What the heck is wrong with me? Hubs has been Mr. Motivated lately, and it's a bit contagious, I must say. We spent a bit of this afternoon cleaning the basement. It was nice and cool down there, but we've got about 50 years worth of the original owner's bits and pieces in the corners (the man saved-and labelled-everything, so if you need parts for a 1974 skil saw, just call) Add to that all our junk and bits of Cupertino all over the place, and its a bit of an endeavour. I got the cool mom award for catching a garter snake in the basement and letting the kids pet it before I took it out to the garden to eat my bugs. I'd rather have him in the basement than the spiders, but he did not look happy to be inside. I'm also 3 for 3 on toad catching once we ventured out into the yard after supper (Chinese buffet! Woohoo!--Thanks Pastor Robert!) Hubs and I got most of the front and south flowerbeds cleaned up. There's some nasty stinging thing in the back, so I got inventive and used the hedge trimmer (can't find the power cord to the weed whacker). We pulled and the kids hauled. Dumped weeds down the pit of the old outhouse. It's good for something. We are not very diligent gardeners, and this place sat empty for a few years before we got here last summer, so it's been slow going as we hack out.

My sister's method of gardening is working for me in a limited fashion. Every year she puts in tons of tomatoes and peppers, then ignores them. Weeds, drought or flood, every year she has TONS of food. I dug trenches and had the kids plant seeds I've been carrying around for a few years. I put in 2 tomato plants and waited. A lot of the stuff was too old and didn't come, and the beets and radishes went sideways instead of down--good leaves, no root. So far, we've had half a dozen nice tomatoes, and 5 summer squash and one zucchini. I had to pull out the zucchini plant because something was eating the roots and turned it to mush, but the squash plants themselves are all HUGE. Considering that I watered it once, and have pulled weeds very minimally (I went around and marked the plants, then mowed where they weren't) it's doing OK. This is the first year that patch was tilled, and it's too shady we found out after the fact, but so far--so good.

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