Sunday, June 29, 2008

The tomatoes, the silence, the new venture

My cherry tomato plants outgrew the Aerogarden this week and I couldn't bare to prune them as much as they would need to be to keep the tiny, compact size needed to fit in the machine. So, I transplanted them (or Blair did, under my instruction) into the Earthbox outside. She used twine to tie them to the fence for a little support, and they are doing quite well. I expect the first harvest in a week or so. I do intend to prune them as vigorously as needed, when they get to about two feet in height. But one foot tall just seemed a bit soon. They'll have loads of room in the Earthbox to grow and augment my salads to their hearts' content.

Haven't been posting much. Haven't been doing much at all. My knees have gotten to a point where if I bend at the waist I hurt myself. Imagine being a mom and not being able to bend at the waist. No picking up stuff off the floor, and cooking and laundry folding must be done from a sitting position. I did the grocery shopping today and every step was daggers in my knee. It didn't help that my sciatica on the other side was acting up, or that the bulging disk in my neck was sending a nerve headache to my head. I don't do pain well, which is a shame since I seem to have a lot of it. My wimpy little Darvocet didn't touch it this morning, either, which means a dose of much stronger Vicodin tonight. All these factors conspire to deepen the darkening clouds of my recurring depression that began gathering yet again at the beginning of June.

But, much to my protestations otherwise, all this sitting has had one benefit: I read a book! It was, of course, non-fiction, and on a topic I hold dear. It was The Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan. It's a title being bandied about on blogs I read and I was piqued. It was very, very good. I had a teensy bit of overlooking to do (a little language, a lot of "old earth" theology, and some just plain silliness) but there was enough ammunition to fuel another battle in my "eating well locally" war I wage with my family. (Not against my family—I try ever so hard to not fight against them! Side by side we fight, in the style of Minutemen soldiers.) So, I've decided I'm going to begin blogging about my locavorous journey. Fear not, the posts (other than this introduction) will be separated from the other stuff of my life, so you can easily tiptoe around them. Won't bother me a bit. Like most of what I blog, what I write is more for the clarification of my own thoughts than the enlightenment of others, anyway! Not that I don't appreciate you, reader(s). And you know who you are.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Books and Reading

A friend was blogging today that she had a book she wanted to read, but more than likely she wouldn't get around to it.

I feel awful about the how little I read. Here I am in a "reading" house and I just don't read. The kids' favorite outing is the library, their favorite gift is a book, hubby is in publishing, my oldest girl is well on her way to a career as an author, and I can't tell you the last time I picked up a book other than a cookbook, a medical reference or my Bible and actually READ it. I do maintain a want-to-read list in case I'm ever hospitalized or get old.

"If you're gonna waste time with your face buried in a book, it'd better be to learn something!" Mom used to say. And I did just that for the majority of my young years. I could teach myself about anything I needed to know by grabbing a book at the library and teaching myself.

When I was a young married, hubby picked up on this trend and introduced me to Robert B. Parker's Spencer novels. I absolutely loved them! The chapters were short, the storyline engaging, and I was just old enough to remember the Spenser TV series with Robert Urich, who always topped my eye candy list. There was even a time when new installments would coincide with the birth of a new child, and hubby would read them aloud to me when I was in labor.

But, probably because my visualization of Urich didn't translate, the enthusiasm I had for Parker waned when he moved on to a female detective and retired the Spenser series. Eventually, pregnancy was put into retirement, too.

Then the capper. I got a Nintendo DS. No, it doesn't expand my horizons or educate me like reading. It's mind-numbing, and that's why I play. I don't become engaged in the storyline. Hubby reads at night, but reading in bed wakes me up as I become involved in the story. I game at night, playing Animal Crossing or Harvest Moon until the sheer boredom spins cobwebs in my brain. It turns off the cares of the day and lulls me to sleep. I can escape the piles of laundry, the dirty dishes, the never made bed, the badly-attituded teen, the constant demands on my time and just plant a garden or write some letters.

And I don't get paper cuts on the stylus.

Friday, June 13, 2008

So THAT's what it was like

Blair came home with a gift for her little sister: WOW 2008 disc 1. Great songs. Like I do with all our new CDs, I popped it into the Mac and downloaded its contents into iTunes to back it up and make its contents available on our iPods. When it was done, it ejected, it ejected, it...

didn't eject! Oh no! The CD was stuck in the drive! You know that little hole beneath the CD drive where you push in a paper clip and the eject a CD manually? New Macs don't have 'em. Why? Because that little manual eject would add width to their look-at-how-cool-and-narrow-our-CPU-is screen.

So, off to Mac Authority we go. Five to seven days they say. I rent a little iBook, but the tiny screen is so...tiny. I can access my business stuff online, but all my documents on the Mac are still on the Mac! Yeah, I have the backup - the one that runs with Leopard, which the little iBook doesn't have.

Two weeks without pre-made chore charts. Without my address and phone book. Without Quicken and my bank talking to each other and balancing my checkbook without my input. Bone knives and bear skins, Jim!

In home news, Christy has come down with a new batch of infections. First "pool ear" in one ear, then otitis media in the other ear. Now she has a UTI. She hasn't got what you'd call a delicate constitution, but when our diet gets too junky, her health always sounds a klaxon and gets me back on the whole foods.

I missed our CSA pickup this week. I had to drive Blair and a friend 250 miles on Monday to get her to where she'd join up with the next leg of her journey: all the way to Colorado Springs for a writer's conference! Then I had to turn around and drive the 250 miles back and try like crazy to get to the CSA pickup location between 4 and 6pm. Didn't make it. I didn't even get close until 7pm. The farmers are donating our share to the local food bank, though, so at least I know the food wasn't trashed.

I get to make the drive again in about two weeks unless I can convince the friend's dad to drive it this time. That would really be great because otherwise I have to try to fit the trip in after dropping hubby and Kate off at work and before picking them up and that is just too narrow a time frame for that distance!

And we are battling a tummy bug. Hubby's got it the worst. He's been off work more than on the last three weeks. I have it but not terribly, and the kids all got over it in a couple days. Mostly for me it's exhibiting as low energy and weakness. It's been a couple weeks since I've felt like doing anything other than sleep. I try to jolt myself into getting just the basics done (dishes, laundry and meals) with coffee. Put that together with the meds I take for my knees (yeah, I messed up the left one about two weeks ago and it's not bouncing back well) and I'm a real damp dishcloth. Charming.