Saturday, April 4, 2020

Covid Journal, Day 21: Garden Time

46 again this morning, a glorious day.


I felt well enough to plant the garden this morning, so that little job is out of the way. Onions, carrots, beets, lettuce, kale and peas are in the ground. Potatoes will wait for the waning moon, and the cabbage has to wait for the plants to get bigger. But I'm happy with what we put out today.



I harvested a few herbs too. My plants made it through the winter for a change, a lucky thing since who knows if I'll be able to get plants this year. Parsley, oregano, sage and thyme are hung to dry on an old drying rack we got from a house being torn down 40 years ago.



My little greenhouse came yesterday and we put it together and moved the seedlings into their new home. This one will do for this year. Next year I might buy another just like it and have two. Or maybe I'll do that this year if I need more space.

weird angles in this photo. I promise the house isn't that crooked!

It's so good to get outside and enjoy the sun and the warmth. Even though our hives died out last year, there are honeybees everywhere. We can't help wondering if one of our hives might have swarmed when we weren't home, and found a place in a hollow tree nearby.

Yesterday's dinner was more foraged food: fried morel mushrooms, potatoes with ramps and creasy greens. Also a bit of ham from the hog Larry helped butcher in January. Today I'm making comfort food--macaroni and cheese with the leftover ham added, and the first green salad from the garden. We looked for asparagus but found only one stalk. More can't be far behind.

Since I was harvesting parsley, sage and thyme today, here's one version of the beautiful old ballad:



Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Friday, April 3, 2020

Covid Journal, Day 20: Furniture Projects

46 this morning, a perfect spring morning. The only thing missing was me. I seem to have caught a cold or sinus thingie and am dragging about these days. I slept in after a restless night. No worries, it's not the virus! I've had this for several weeks, just sinus-y and a little cough from the post-nasal drip. TMI, I know. I finally broke down and took a DayQuil this morning, so perhaps that will help. That and plenty of tea! Between the ongoing arrhythmia and a cold, I am certainly not feeling my usual self.



So even though yesterday was also a pretty day, I stayed inside. The air was chilly even with the sun shining. I worked on a few writing things, caught up the laundry, made some scones and painted furniture. All of it done at a snail's pace.But still, it's progress.

I have four chairs to paint--the one on the right is finished, the one on the left needs to be distressed and waxed. The little stool is finished, and the wicker table in the background is almost done.


These pieces are pretty much done and waiting to go to a booth. I may have to re-visit the base of the cabinet on the left--the white is too perfect and glaring, so I think I'll do some gray and then distress. The secretary in the back with the mirror is done, thank goodness. It certainly gave me fits. The listtle stand in front was once a sewing machine cabinet. We took out the part that held the machine, then put the lid back on and screwed it down for the top. 



This is inside the little sewing cabinet.


We left the spool holders and the rack on the door of the sewing cabinet, just need to clean it up. Dusty!


I really like the way the fold-down desktop on the secretary came out--the paint crackled for some reason and I left it like that.



Larry fixed up this small kitchen cabinet. The door needed the hinge fixed, and the whole thing needed cleaned, sanded and painted. It's metal, nice for the kitchen or laundry room.


Working on this sign. The color of the wording doesn't stand out enough. Hmmmm....what to do?


This morning I've been canceling all my summer performances. I hate to do it, but I think that for this year I am going to take the summer off and let this virus thing play out. The less time in public, the better. It has been years--at least 35-40--since I have not worked in the summer at an outside job, so I think I will actually enjoy this break. We will keep working at our booths, of course, picking slow times to go in. But for this summer, storytelling is on hold.

I've managed three days of poems for NaPoWriMo so far, only 27 to go! You can read today's installment here.  I never thought I'd be writing about a skink, but life is funny like that.

(Had to go through and re-number these posts--seems I repeated a couple!)

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Covid Journal, Day 19: Bread and Bulk, Family and Poetry

43 this morning, and the sun up and promising a pretty day. We seem to be stuck on that 43 degree mark in the mornings! The day will warm up, so perhaps there will be time for a walk.



We finally ran out of store-bought bread, so it was time to break out the yeast and get to work. I made an oatmeal-honey bread that refused to rise at first, but eventually came up to the mark. I opted for round loves. This bread makes great toast.

I've been looking ahead and thinking about the kinds of things we may run out of. We are still well-stocked but I went ahead and ordered some things in advance of need. My lemon-ginger tea, a must in the mornings,



PG Tips tea for making iced tea. Dish detergent arrived yesterday, and laundry detergent is on the way. The super-sized toilet paper rolls arrived last week, as did plastic food storage bags and a big box of 192 Mini-Moos for Larry's coffee if we run out of milk. I've ordered a pound of yeast, a gallon of canola oil, and back-ordered more flour. I also ordered birdseed (black sunflower) and seed cakes for our wild birds that seem to be feeling hard done by since the feed ran out.

I am going back and forth between Amazon and ebay for these things, depending on who can ship fastest. Many Amazon items have a long shipping time now, whereas ebay can have most items out in less than a week. I know we could go to the store during senior hours, but I prefer not to go if possible. We will run out of fresh fruit before long, as well as milk and butter. Those things I will ask my son to pick up for us. He can leave them on our porch, where they will stay overnight  before we touch them--and even then we'll be sanitizing and wearing gloves.

It s a little more expensive ordering online, but the flip side of that is that we are not traveling, and what we're buying is still much less than usual. I appreciate my mailman more and more every day and hope this virus will not affect him or his family. How are your supplies holding up? Are you still getting out to the stores, or are you buying online? Or are you still well-supplied with all you need?

All our family is still well. My cousin reports that Aunt Grace is still well and enjoyed reading the many kind messages sent to her via my cousin through Facebook. At 98 she is so very vulnerable, but chipper and cheerful as ever. My cousin Les, the brother of John who writes the blog By Stargoose And Hanglands, called last weekend and said he and John are both well, but cannot get together because of the very strict stay-home rules now in effect in England. They are only allowed outside for an hour of exercise each day, and must go alone or with only one other person who lives in their house. Since they're living in separate houses, this means they can't see each other. But Les sounded good, and is finding ways to keep himself occupied.

Yesterday was the beginning of NaPoWriMo, National Poetry Writing Month. I am going to try it again this year, writing one poem a day for the month of April, which as you know is National Poetry Month. If you want to follow along, my poetry blog is Mountain Poet. Or, if you want to give it a try, visit the NaPoWriMo site. Since we all have extra time on our hands, this might be the opportunity many people need to start writing poetry.

See you tomorrow, my friends. Stay well.

Copyright Susanna Holstein. All rights reserved. No Republication or Redistribution Allowed without attribution to Susanna Holstein.
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