15 June 2009

A Healthier Place

Ever since high school I have kept a notebook of quotes. I write down quotes that inspire me, quotes that make me wish everyone were in agreement, and quotes that make me laugh. It's interesting to look back and see the things that filled those categories at different points. For example, after I broke up with my high-school boyfriend, I copied out Gloria Steinem's idea that women need men like fish need bicycles. At the time, I found that humorous. I may be revealing more than I'd like about my adolescent self.

In February, I copied out this quote:

"wherever we go, the city, the country, to moon, we take ourselves with us.
there is no heaven. i used to fantasize about living in a healthier place,
one where i could ride my bike, for example. then, one day, i started
riding my bike. now, without having fled or escaped to anywhere, i live
in a place where i can ride my bike."
~ heretic fig

This spring, I decided to just go ahead and plant a garden, fitting things in my existing beds as I was able. We had put in the raised bed, and then didn't know what to fill it with, so I improvised elsewhere. First, we made a tipi for the children to have a shady little "fort", and I planted bean seeds all 'round it:

I bought two types of cucumbers, one eating, one pickling. (The last time I made pickles, no one in the family liked them, including me. Monkey #1 insisted we needed to make pickles.) The orange arrows are the cucumbers. You can also see the pumpkin in the corner, because I took this picture after we finally found the fill for the bed:

By the kitchen door, I planted my herbs. I labeled everything (and it took forever, reminding again of why I dislike computers. See how much I love you all?) I like herbs, so there are lots. Especially basil. We've already eaten two salads made with lettuce from our own garden. I chose a buttercrunch variety:

The watermelon was also purchased especially for Monkey#1. We'll put in a tripod for it to grow up when it's a bit larger. (I'll also remove the iris, which managed to escape the clean out last fall. Ignore them, please.)

If you look in the picture above, you can see where the garage is in relation to the herb bed. I was nervous about planting food here, because of the paint chips. I have tried to sprout loofah seeds before, without success, so when I saw this plant at the nursery I decided it was perfect for this spot. Now instead of consuming plants that grew in (potentially) lead-laced soil, I'll just be scrubbing my body with them. This is my loofah plant, between the chopped-off iris, and the wilted lilies. I bought it just for me:

The Mad Scientist built this fort for the children during my nap a few weeks ago. He found a honeydew melon plant at the nursery, which we'll train over the top of the fort. Sorry not to highlight the plant more; I have reached the end of my patience with the lines and arrows program. You can see this plant, purchased just for my dear husband, just at the corner of the fence:So there it is. Without moving to a healthier place, in the country, with a bigger yard, I have planted all sorts of yummy things all over the place. I'm so proud of myself, and excited to see how everything does. I promise, though, that I won't quit using capital letters. :-)

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