Tuesday, December 21, 2010

A little of this and that

First light is softly penetrating low clouds. It assures me that I did not miss the historic Solstice eclipse. My neighbors bare pear tree makes an eerie view against the gray morning. It is almost a haunted setting for the day ahead. White Christmas is rare in the Pacific Northwest. We are quite fond of them when they do come but snow season is still a month away. We love bright Christmas lights for the cozy romance they bring to these dark December days.

The January Sunset Magazine came just the other day. It has me itching to garden, to cook and to travel. There was a feature article about a northern California family who do not fill a can of garbage in a year. Right now I am looking at two grocery sacks and a Costo Chex box sitting on the kitchen floor waiting to go to the trash bin. I don't want to make a big footprint, but I am sure that I do. One wasteful habit confronts me each morning before I am awake enough to think about the impact. My beloved Keurig coffee maker with its little plastic cups of ground coffee. I see the top of a carton of half and half in one of the sacks waiting to exit the house. Somewhere in one of those brown bags are the contents of my vacuum cleaner. I like my Dyson. It does not use bags and lives a long time. But I wonder if there is a better way to dispose of the waste. I see a used container of almond milk, used daily in my morning smoothie with a dollop of yogurt from a plastic tub. The flavor comes from berries that I find in clear plastic containers, probably shipped from Chili. This will take some thinking through. I am a smart woman, I can figure this out.

In the Garden: I enjoy reading Sunset's PNW garden advice. Sunset and The Westside Gardeners PNW timetable have often kept me from starting too late or too early. The Sunset guide has me in the mood to go shopping (was that me that was writing about cutting back?)
Grow a new rose. I am all over that! Something that I intend to learn to do this year is start a cutting garden. A new rose or two would fit the scheme! In Robe I had two roses that I adored. One was a deep dark sexy red that Jason rescued from a new home owner. It did not fit into her gardening scheme. It provided large flowers on long stems for the many years it lived with us. The other Robe rose was a yellow David Austin. More flowers than me or the bees knew what to do with. There was a season when I thought I would stick to all purples, lavenders and shades of cinnamon to salmon in the front flower garden. No yellows, pinks, reds or white. Now all I want are seasonal blossoms for my table. Last year I got sick of taking pictures of the same color again and again. I want wild abandon in the cutting garden and a new rose seems like a good place to burst out.

The Westside Gardener's "Vegetable Timetable" by Travis Saling

Fresh from the garden in January. Did you know there was something fresh from the garden in January? I have carrots in my garden. I should have kale and Brussels sprouts but I did not get my act together in July. Sunset is telling me that I can also have Jerusalem Artichokes fresh from the garden in January. They are far lower on the glycymic index than potatoes and easier to grow in the PNW than Sweet Potatoes. Since I garden in containers I should be safe to give them a go. Looks like they will need some tall support. I'm going to add that to my list of hard scape projects for Ray and Chris.
  • Wooden dowel clothes dryer (they come from China now and the price has shot through the sky!)
  • Ladder type trellis for vine crops.
  • Cold frame for the garden (why did I sell all my old window frames?)
  • Box garden with supports for Jerusalem Artichokes
  • Deck cover.

Now, to get ready to visit the Dental Hygienist. After that, Ray and I are going to Whidbey Island for the afternoon. I wonder what I have for a picnic?

Deborah.... who is delighted with the gray headed "angel" Not all of us angles are young and beautiful on the outside.


  1. Alright...A bit confused as to what that is dressed in the gown...

  2. Haha! First, it isn't in a gown, it is in a pantsuit. That is my old woman angel.