Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Gardening: Fourth time's a charm

Last summer we had a little garden planted in our back yard.  It did ok pretty bad.  We really didn't get much food from it.  In fact, our squash and zucchini were taken over almost immediately by evil squash bugs.  Nothing we did seemed to help.  Evil, I tell you! But we chalked up most of our failures to the fact that we had planted late (not to the fact that we had no idea what we were doing.)

This year we started our seeds indoors in these cute little plastic planters, like the ones that your get your small plants in from Wal-Mart.  They looked slighly pathetic, but hey, they were sprouting!  Since we both have (over) educated backgrounds we thought we could increase the size of the garden by 12x4 feet or so and have all these amazing vegetables.   Naturally, we would do organic to be environmentally friendly, blah, blah, blah.  It sounds good, until you realize the work involved.  More on that later.

One sunny April day I went out and planted all our little seedlings.  I watered them, some. But, uh, they didn't make it.  I tried again with seeds directly in the ground. Nothing for a week or so.  I got ancy and tried again.  ~Look, it's obvious I'm not great at this.  My biology background is in molecular work, not horticulture.~  In other words, no those seedlings didn't pop up either.  But if you want me to extract DNA and sequence it, I'm there.

However, after reading some literature on how to plant certain plants together to assist in pest control, I tried one last time.  It worked!  (I think God took pity on my persistance.)  The amusing part?  Some of the plants that I'd planted before popped up too.  So I have a few rogue tomato plants, broccoli in my cucumber patch, and some diverged carrots and lettuces.  But hey, they're there!

The important thing is, I can grow things! And so can you. (Probably much better than myself.)

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The difference a year makes...

A year ago I was an unfulfilled housewife.  Being at home was a burden not a blessing.  I longed to do more, for people to know I was smart and be fulfilled in some way.  So I got a job.  But almost immediately I realized that it wasn't very fulfilling.  I didn't feel challenged or rewarded in my new position.  The hours were so different from my husband's work schedule that eventually, we only saw each for a couple of hours in the evening.  Even then it was only to eat together and then to go to bed.  Slowly, we stopped reading the Bible together at night.  We stopped taking weekend trips.  I stopped running.  I barely slept.  I was exhausted and I missed my husband.  Then my sweet hubby came home with a marriage seminar DVD by Chip Ingram.  By the end of it, I realized my job hadn't fulfilled me and it never would.  This was not my dream.  Worse, if I kept going at this pace, I was liable to ruin my marriage.  I realized that many women would love to be able to stay at home. I realized staying at home and supporting my husband might go against all the new age feminism that surrounds us today, but for us it could be right.  Jobs end, family lasts forever.  So I quit.  

But I knew with my personality, I couldn't just sit around all day.  I'd need to be challenged and have tasks for myself.  Which led me to starting a big organic vegetable garden.  Then I beefed up my cake making.  All in addition to keeping house, making all our meals, and DIY home decor projects.  Oh, and my new hobby of knitting.  I have to say, it feels amazing so far!  I'm still busy beyond belief, but we finally have time to do date nights, go to the lake and the family cabin, and, gratefully, sleep! So, I'll be blogging more. I'm going to have posts from my adventures in gardening, new recipes and cooking techniques, and some general life trials and errors.  Get ready world! I'm back, and saucier than ever!