Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Babbling Towards Spring

Now that we are all looking forward to Spring here, it's time to start thinking about planting seeds, organizing, cleaning out the accumulated dust and clutter of the winter and better organizing the yard for efficiency.

It's February 1st and I am fighting off a sickness that is totally wearing me out. I haven't got enough energy to actually get up and do anything, but I'm still awake enough that I am terribly fidgety. I at least have enough energy to blog.

I've started getting seed catalogs. There's Gurney's and Raintree here already. I've perused the Seeds of Change website. I really need to check out the new companies that are supporting The Survival Podcast while I wait for Seeds of Change to renew their TSP members discount. Recently I bought three packs of seeds at Home Depot while I was there looking for stainless steel staples. I got beets, zucchini and pickling cucumbers. I also have some seedlings starting in my bedroom window. A sugar pumpkin that Morpheus' dad gave me a couple months ago had a ton of seeds in it that I had saved in a small container. However, they hadn't dried out all the way and began to sprout! So I now have 14 seeds starting. I'm looking forward to pumpkin pies and a yard full of other food for my family.

Part of growing your own food seems to be storing it. In such small living quarters, I've begun to see the limitations of storage that I need to overcome. The cabinets are usually stuffed with baking supplies, canned goods and other shelf-stable foods. Whenever I see good foods that we'll eat on sale, I buy extras. I've got things as organized as I can but am running out of obvious space for food storage. I've considered using the old trailer for surplus food storage, but it already has all of my books and craft supplies stored there and there are still more books in boxes that haven't yet been unpacked. I also need better water storage options. I'd like to store some extra water for emergencies and for when I fail to see that the water tanks are nearly empty as I usually do. I have water stored in the car but not any in the house. I'd also like to set up rain barrels, but that's a different topic. I'm thinking that we might need to look into an outdoor surplus pantry, possibly built out of one of those upright garden tool sheds or something.

Walking around the house I am realizing that it desperately needs a sweep out. I'd like a good warm, non-windy day to pull everything out of the house, even the rugs, and sweep the whole thing out. Both trailers could use this, actually. Everything needs a good wipe down too. The windows have accumulated some mold, some of it accessible only from outside, yet coming into the house through the screens. I think that once I am feeling better, the first sunny day is going to be a massive clean the trailers out day. Does anyone know how to clean carpet without an electric vacuum? The new trailer could use a serious vacuuming.

We recently added a cabover to our strange little homestead. So, now, the old trailer goes along the center, the new trailer is perpendicular to it on it's right as you look towards the it, and to the left, parallel to the new trailer, is the cabover. This cabover is now Maia's personal space or "clubhouse". In the old trailer, what was once the kids' only bedroom is now Terran's playroom. Both kids sleep in the new trailer in a room that holds two bunk beds. They sleep and store their clothes here and that seems to be all the space allows for. With the new addition, the yard once again got totally disrupted and has remained a frazzled mess ever since. Some days are just too cold and rainy to figure out what to do with the mess and other days I am too busy with something else (like sewing boat cushion covers). I really need to get the front yard space under control to allow for vegetable and herb gardens and for creating my outdoor 'internet cafe' for when we have people staying up here. I have one raised bed out there that has lettuce, swiss chard and brussels sprouts growing in it. I also have two tables with umbrellas and 4 chairs each plus the porch swing and a few small tables. I need a few more raised beds, at the very least, and I have some great ideas for how to do that with things I can find around here. I may need another table, though I'd really like a kid height table that is big enough for a lot of kids to sit around and do craft projects or something. I have one in storage but it's wooden. I need one that can survive the weather out here.

Well, that is as much babbling as I can do while sick before really sounding like I'm losing my brain. This inspired some of my blog: http://networkedblogs.com/dKH9O.

Also, I tried to fix the complications of commenting on my blog. Please let me know if it's working better for you.