Dumping the Brain

I have so many things I wanted to write about today that I couldn’t decide on just one thing, so you will be getting all of my thoughts and pictures. As I sat down to start this my power went out and the sirens went off telling us a tornado had been spotted, luckily no damage has been reported and after 5 hours with no power things have returned to normal. I think the best place to start will be with the garden.

Planted wildflower seeds for butterflies and hummingbirds here today.

Planted wildflower seeds for butterflies and hummingbirds today.

I have lost all my cabbage, corn, tomatoes and most-likely my spaghetti squash. I’m devastated. This was the first year I started everything from seed. To see it grow, nurture it and finally put it into the garden plot only a week later to find myself dealing with winter-like temperatures which killed off my success is heart-breaking. I’m not giving up, but it will definitely cost me a lot more at this stage to buy plants already started.

On a more positive note, my radishes are doing great as are the carrots. This is the first time I have ever been able to get carrot seeds to take. Thanks for the tip to put them in sandy soil, that must have been the key to success.

Carrots, need to separate, this is what happens when a 4 year old helps sprinkle seeds.

Carrots, need to separate, this is what happens when a 4 year old helps sprinkle seeds.

Radishes, can you guess who planted these seeds?

Radishes, can you guess who planted these seeds?

Rain and more rain

Just when I thought we were done with the rain it returns. Time has not been my best friend lately. I have more things I want to get done than hours in the day. Just when all the weeding has been completed it starts raining again and I have to start all over. It’s been slowing down the planting in the Little Cove. I stuck the last few containers of flowers I had started on a table outdoord yesterday, but didn’t get them in the ground before it got dark. I forgot all about them until I woke in the middle of the night to a thunderstorm. It was at that moment my flowers were remembered. They were in containers with no drainage holes. I rolled over and went back to sleep. I figured the damage was already done.

While I was weeding my grandson collected and placed rocks for this area.  I added more of the marigolds and then added nasturtiums on one side and morning glories in the center around the base if the threes. I plan to train the morning glories up the tree trunks.

While I was weeding my grandson collected and placed rocks for this area. I added more of the marigolds saved after the storm then added nasturtiums on one side and morning glories in the center around the base if the threes. I plan to train the morning glories up the tree trunks.

Sure enough my poppies were goners, but the rest I was able to save. I dodged the intermittent rain this afternoon to get enough weeding done to get them in the ground along with more seed of varieties I hadn’t started yet.

I needed a break and the little ones were kind enough to give me the diversion I needed.

Some tree climbing

Some tree climbing

We still had to race indoors to escape cold rain, but in-between we enjoyed a few outdoor activities.

Rain puddles provide hours of entertainment.

Rain puddles provide hours of entertainment.

Family bonds
I have a kid, I say kid because I’m old enough to be his mother, and my boys are older than he is, living next door to me who is a sweet, quiet, yet very polite young man.

Spinach is growing nicely in my salvaged drawer adding a pop of color in the front window.

Spinach is growing nicely in my salvaged drawer adding a pop of color in the front window.

I happened to be racing in as the rain started again when I bumped into him leaving. He shared that he was going home, as he does every Tuesday, (an hour and a half trip) to play soccer. As I was wishing him luck an telling him I hoped he wouldn’t get caught in a downpour he shared why he goes home to play soccer.

While his parents are in their 50s and all his siblings are grown, some married, the entire extended family makes sure to arrange their schedules to be free Tuesday nights to play soccer as a family unit.. Note to anyone who thinks it’s too late to take up a sport. This is the first year his mother has played with them.

This story explained everything about him to me. I believe many of the problems I see in society comes from the breakdown of the family unit and loss of grandparents and other extended family nearby. I could have told you this young man came from a family, whether single or two parent, that put people first. I just wish more families were this close, we would see better adjusted youth.

Gift from college student still surviving.

Gift from college student still surviving.

We waste what?!

I was reading through Yes! Magazine this weekend and spotted some disturbing statistics. I know I live in the most wasteful society on earth at this moment, but even this shocks me.

Do you know that the average person in the US uses 57 sheets of toilet paper per day? For a total of 50 pounds a year. This is in comparison to Europe who uses 17 pounds per year and the Chinese who use only .5 pounds a year. Aren’t all butts the same no matter where we live? I counted for 4 days to see how many sheets I use in a day, not changing anything about my typical usage, the number varied from a low of 12 to a hugh of 16. Where do you think you are?

Another before and almost after

Thej bankers chair is almost done. I still have some touch-ups that need to wait till the rain stops. Here is the before.

Adjustable solid wood office chair rescued as it was about to be heaved onto the dumpster

Adjustable solid wood office chair rescued as it was about to be heaved onto the dumpster

And now the after. A good sanding to remove the varnish and old stain a fresh coat of black enamel for long lasting wear, and a reupholstered cushion it now looks like this.

Can't you see this in a reading corner  next to sunny window?

Can’t you see this in a reading corner next to sunny window?

That’s what was on my brain today. What was on yours?

34 thoughts on “Dumping the Brain

    • Alex, we have finally transitioned into some real summer weather, I realized it had been getting to me when I noticed how much complaining I had been doing. I need to develop a new mindset as I fear we are in for unpredictable weather in upcoming years.

  1. The banker’s chair is a fabulous find and I love what you’ve done with it. I’m sorry about your seedlings, it’s so frustrating isn’t it? I think I spent so much on tomato seedlings last spring it really wasn’t worth it. They all came to various sad ends. I think I got two cherry tomatoes and one about the size of an egg from 6 seedlings!

    • I’m sorry you had such a disastrous season last year, Jen. I went out yesterday and found new growth on several so I’m hopeful I will end up with more than you did.

  2. That is such a bummer about losing the seedlings. I have to say I’m surprised about the cabbage since they’re usually quite cold tolerant (I’ve planted transplanted cruciferous stuff in late February / early March before and never lost any to cold.) But it is such a bummer when garden plants don’t do well. My outdoor spinach and chard are finally big enough to harvest a few leaves, but sure enough, the leaf-miners have already infested them. Sigh. I planted some in my little basement window greenhouse – so we’ll see how that little experiment goes.

    My current dilemma is that all of my garden space is quickly filling up with volunteer squash and pumpkins – the seeds don’t seem to fully compost and this happens every year. I usually just let them grow, but there are a LOT this year – and given the amount of squash and pumpkin that I haven’t been able to make myself eat, I’m thinking I should probably pull them up and give everything else more sun etc. But I feel strangely guilty about it.

    Anyhow, LOVE the chair. Hopefully someone will buy it!

    • My spinach has sprouted and hopefully will turn out. Sorry yours are being eaten. Does lime help? I was able to save my cabbage last year with lime after the worms thought I’d planted the cabbage for them.

      Maybe you could offer some of your excess plants to someone else? I would have a hard time pulling up any plant that wanted to grow.

  3. Wow, a bit of everything!

    1. So sad about the plants. They had a spring frost here, last year, and it destroyed the cherry crop. Definitely some hard luck there. :-(

    2. That is so neat, about your neighbor and his family. What a fun tradition!

    3. I love the refurb of the 70’s chair. Looks very nice!

    • Bethany, I just had to as my son says “dump the hard drive” lol

      Gardening sounds so easy, until we take mother nature into the equation. Lets hope this is then end of it.
      Glad you enjoyed the chair!

    • I’m so sorry, Jayne. It seems this will be another year of struggles for gardening. I am concerned about it on a larger scale too. Farmers locally are saying their crops had to wait to be planted and they aren’t sure if they will have their crops harvested in time before the season ends. Hopefully we get a late autumn to make up for such a late spring.

      I’m glad you like the chair, its one of the pieces that will be hard to sell I wish someone I knew wanted it so I could still visit it. At least it didn’t end up in the landfill. I’ll share more later on its construction its really amazing.

  4. Awww so sorry you lost so many of your plants Lois… And they were looking really strong little plants… I know the gardener next allotment to us planted out his Runner beans a few weeks back now and lost all those to a late frost.. Hubby today has just put in our Runner Beans he’s hardened off in cold frame, but they were getting pot bound so they have had to go in.. He has also planted out the sweetcorn today too.. All we need now is warmer weather as the Rain and cooler winds have made things stick for a while here..
    Frustration is the game in gardening.. But we carry on.. Success in some and failures in others… I doubt my fresh runners I planted of the strawberries will flower in time this year to fruit.. or my replanted Raspberry canes.. But hope to reap those rewards next year.. :-)
    Its great that the grandchildren take so much interest in the garden…….
    And wouldnt it be great if ALL families could maintain a day of togetherness… Something many families forget when they fledge the nest is to keep in touch…

    • Sue, I hope all your plants survive. It is such a touchy thing to figure out when to start seedlings. I started mine too early as spring came late and they, like yours, were root bound.

      There is always next year for some. I’m just impressed that I was finally able to nurture so many from seed. Its true a black thumb can be trained😊

      Isn’t my neighbor’s family amazing? The example they have set will be passed on for generations because it is such a fun activity to Participate in. Family togetherness and physical activity what a great combination.

  5. Gardening is a VERY frustrating thing. hope you are able to replant. I often think about people who farm for a living and how they are very much at the hands of Mother Nature. It’s not an easy thing for anyone.

    • I’ll replant, the only thing that will be hard to replace will be the spaghetti squash. I too think about the farmers, its hard not to when you have farms around you like I do. Its a hard life so dependent on mother nature.

  6. It is indeed heartbreaking when we invest so much that gets destroyed later on. I wish you luck for your upcoming decisions :)
    Your chair was so spectacularly different, I had to to scroll up & down comparing them to see if they were the same! Just splendid!

    • Thank you. I know I won’t starve, but its still sad to see the loss.

      I’m glad you liked the chair. There is a funny story about how it turned out. The morning I begged to keep the chair I had stopped by a local second hand store to see some fabrics she had out the week before. She brought me two large boxes to go through. I filled a bag, overflowing with fabrics I liked and was charged $1.50. I gave her $2 feeling badly. When I saw the chair I knew one of the fabrics I bought would be perfect and knew I wanted to paint it with black I had on hand. So the total cost was pennies for the fabric to remake it.

      • Amazing story! That’s exactly what I appreciate and would like to emulate… I am learning a lot from your blog :)
        Do you mind next time to show the upholstering steps? I have never seen it done… That gives me an idea! I’ll look it up on the internet. Thanks for this detailed response, I appreciate :)

        • i will try to remember to show the steps. Its actually very easy. i removed the staples with small screwdriver and pliars. then cut a piece of fabric a little bigger than i need. i put one staple in the middle od each side being sure to pull it tight, then work out from there. this keeps the fabric lined up especially if there is a design that i dont want crooked

          • Thanks ever so much! I looked it up on you tube, most of them used expensive tools but I then searched for a private video (the others had upholster shops) and found this very easy demo like the one you just described. Thanks for your patience :)

          • I tend not to show tutorials because I taught myself and am sure my way is very different from how professionals would do it. Glad you found an easy tutorial that won’t cost you a fortune to try. Really unless you are doing something large you only need simple household items and a staple gun.

  7. “Try again next year” – that seems to be a constant mantra amongst gardeners. I am very excited about your carrot success. I have yet to achieve that nirvana but am ever-hopeful. I planted carrot seeds again on the weekend (they are a cool weather crop here).

    I giggled about you training the morning glory. They are regarded as a terrible weed in the hinterland where I live. They grow wild over the native bush and trees and we would love to be rid of this weed.

    • Thanks, Fairy, just what I need to start growing more weeds to have to contend with😊. Here morning glories are an annual, it gets too cold for them to survive the winters.

      I am excited about the carrots, I was told they needed sandy soil, so I planted then in an old sandbox that I have been adding potting soil and compost to for a year. It seemed to do the trick. Although the way they are growing in a clump, I may end up with some pretty strange shaped clumps of carrots. I don’t mind I can chop them and no one will ever know!

      • Don’t be so sure about those morning glories! I lived on the Canadian border of Minnesota(I think a zone 2?), and the ones I grew there re-seeded every year, and I’m pulling them every summer when we visit the house.

  8. I never planted spaghetti squash. Just buried the seeds and remains after scraping it out. Next thing I knew, I had squash coming up everywhere that was supposed to have been composting. Tomatos did the same thing. Who knew. I didn’t get to harvest them but my son’s roommate did. Give it a try some time. Love the bankers chair. Rain will be gone here by Friday then the heat comes back. At least we don’t have storms. Glad you have so much fun with the little ones. They will remember it forever.

    • I may very well try that with several plants this year. I’m trying my hand at growing pumpkins again this year. so far the only time I was ever successful growing a pumpkin was when one fell off the porch railing one Halloween in a snow storm. I was too lazy to dig it out of the snow drift and sure enough we had our only pumpkin plant while my boys were young.

  9. Lois, the Bankers Chair is beautiful.

    So sorry about the “cabbage, corn, tomatoes and most-likely my spaghetti squash”….Why not give this a try..I think there is a chance (expcept for the corn), it might work. Just put in seeds… Baby them along a bit, if possible..I have planted them late, and had surprising good results…(never corn)…

    • thanks Lynn,

      i will have to buy more seeds, i planted all i had of those, luckily i havent planted my celery other squashes, watermelon or cucumbers to name just a few so eben if i get off to a late start i should be okay supplementing with the farmers market. Live and learn right? Therr’s always next year to try again.

  10. Such a shame about the rain, especially strong damaging rain when you have a new garden! Glad you have a wholesome kid neighbour :)

    • Thank you Sarah. Its been challenging to say the least with the garden, but unfortunately I’m not the only one. Everyone lost most of their vegetables. The peas are doing well but zero tomato plants survived along with other plants.

      Yes, all my neighbors are wonderful, even the college kids. I think I have the all the good ones right here by me.

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