monthly updates

July Wrap-Up

Look what I found when visiting friends this weekend! Gotta say it looks pretty nice in print. We had a great visit to wind up a month that was, to be honest, kind of weird. It’s been really hot and busy at all the wrong times, so I haven’t gotten out much, and it’s been dragging my mood down.  img_0159

Writing – Still chipping away ever so slowly at the Fairy Hills edit, but I only have 75 pages left to go.

Knitting – Also slow.

Garden – Is beyond awesome, but I’ve blogged a lot about that recently, so I won’t repeat it all here. My second crop of peas are already sprouting.

Reading – I had a goal this month of finishing all five of the books I had already started before I picked up any new ones. Those were: All We Can Save (mixed feelings), The City of Dreaming Books (a fun conceit that couldn’t support a weak plot), Understanding Comics (lots to think about), and the last-for-now of my Asprin revisit, Hit or Myth. That just leaves Wonderbook, which I’m clearly not in the mood for right now and have shelved. I also read Come Fly the World for my Ravelry book group (didn’t like it), and I reread Hicksville and Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency. My August slate is clear, my TBR shelves crying for relief.

I am six weeks into the Couch to 5k program and haven’t hurt myself yet, so here’s hoping.


Garden Update

Every morning lately I ride my bike over to the garden and see what’s going on. These tomatoes are from just the past few days, so img_0146 I think our first year is going pretty well! Today I pulled up what was left of the first lettuce planting; it was looking bedraggled after last week’s heat wave. I’ll be a little more restrained in the amount I plant next time. The zucchini continues to produce ebulliently, and our one butternut squash vine has so many flowers I am almost alarmed by the prospect. The only total failure has been the cucumbers.

The driveway pots have taken a back seat this year, although I planted a second crop of peas in there a few days back. The pots have surprised me a couple of times recently. Last week one of the small ones spontaneously produced a tiny basil plant, which I have been hovering over in delight ever since it sprouted. One of the bigger pots I had planted with chard early in the year. A squirrel got into it and messed everything up, and I wrote it off and didn’t plant anything else in there, as I was already too busy with other things by that point in the spring. Well, the seeds were apparently still in there, and now are coming up like they were never bothered at all. The strawberry plant I bought on impulse after a really irritating morning is not only still alive and occasionally flowering, but putting out runners into the neighboring pots.

Honestly the only problem with this whole gardening thing is that now I never want to do anything else.


It Begins

img_0092Our very first grape tomatoes are alllllmost ripe today, and there are a hundred more ready to follow after them. I picked a couple of jalapeno peppers and made plans for pesto upon realizing how much my basil has grown. Did not spy any more zucchini hiding among the shadows, but it’s a bit of a jungle in there — I honestly had no idea how large some of these plants would get. Only the cucumbers look unhappy; they did flower, so we’ll see how they do. Might just be that it’s been so dry this summer, despite near-daily watering. I wasn’t sure I would like having a garden? But this is amazing. I go over there and don’t want to leave. I love watching the bees in the flowers, and looking at the plants and how they are growing. I love weeding.

It has been a very outdoor-intensive weekend. On Saturday I was out with the Friends of the Fells for a few hours, cutting down invasive Japanese knotweed. This morning my hiking group went out to Revere Beach for an early walk. I hadn’t been over there in ages–wow, has it changed! Lots of new buildings along the water. Then over to the garden this afternoon. This is how summer ought to be spent, I think.

monthly updates

June Wrap-Up

Despite the steady impacts of political disaster, I’ve been feeling better in myself this month. Which is good, because there’s a lot to do. It was a whirlwind of a month in terms of events, mostly with school.

Writing: I’ve been in a bit of a post-project slump here, but I have gotten a bit of editing done on the next one. Sales are not exactly busting records so far. If I don’t find some way to improve the numbers (Kindle edition and paperback), then Fairy Hills will be my final self-publishing project, because I can’t afford it. I will be trying some experiments in the next couple of months.

Knitting: Has been on the back burner this month, with very little progress.

Books: I read seven books in June, four of them new, plus three old Robert Asprin books I’ve had a weird nostalgic hankering to revisit. That puts me at 27 for the year so far, and a good mix of new stuff and old.

Garden: Is doing really well. I am astonished and delighted to watch everything grow, given that I haven’t done much with it other than occasional weeding. Put plants in ground, water regularly, get food? The pea plants I put in the driveway are already fading, and I harvested a small bowl of potatoes. The strawberry is putting out runners to other containers; I’m curious to see what it does from there.

Hiking: Three! I want to prioritize getting outside in July. It seems to be critical for me these days.

I also started running again mid-month; we’ll see how long that lasts this time…. Work is going well, and I found a climate group that wanted help with their newsletter — finally, a task I am qualified to contribute to. Onward into summer!


Garden Update

Last weekend I went for two hikes. It was glorious, although very warm. This morning I biked over to the garden before work so I could catch up on the weeding before it rains today. I am over the moon about what a change six weeks makes! Everything is growing happily, and there are flowers and even tiny fruits to be seen on most of the plants.

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Bracing myself to eat nothing but tomatoes for all of August, and very grateful for my little spot in this community.