Liralen Li (liralen) wrote,
Liralen Li

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Working the Earth

We had a busy morning. I made hash browns, bacon, eggs, and toast for breakfast. Jet partook of the toast and the hash browns and peered at the others. The eggs were the "organically raised" pet chicken eggs from a co-worker's father and they varied in size from tiny (about as wide as a silver dollar) to enormous, about as big as the extra-large commercial eggs. The yolks were creamy orange and the whites firm and sweet. I'll have to weigh a commercial "large" egg to see what a large egg should be in order to do recipes, but he's promised us a dozen whenever we need 'em.

We then headed off to Costco and loaded up on food for church's coffee hour, underwear, shorts, and swim wear. It's only $20 for an $80-100 dollar swim suit, and I'm not shy about wearing astonishingly bright colors. From there we hit the Skeins, Shuttles, and Spindles and I got one last ounce of the deep blue for my variegated mix. It was heartening to see the variegated multicolor yarns selling for $10 an ounce while I was buying my solids for $1.50 per ounce and using them to make my opal colored yarns.

We then hit the Brewing Shop for John to brew more beer. I saw some sassparilla bark, so I bought it. I want to make root beer and ginger beer this summer with Jet. It should be fun and we have the bottling equipment and making 11 bottles at a time is pretty nice.

Home again home again, and Jet said he wanted to nap in the van, but ended up just playing with the Lilo and Stitch music. I planted my basil plants. Then John helped me haul the compost barrel up onto the raised bed, and we dumped the contents onto there. The lumps from the various lawn clippings had stayed lumps, but everything else was pretty well broken down. Egg shells hadn't really mixed in that well, but of the hundreds of teabags we'd put in I saw nary a sign. There was just one corn cob of the dozens we had from last summer, so, on the most part, a lot of the stuff broke down really well. It was just big lumps of slimy lawn clippings that had me a little worried.

I spend most of the afternoon working the compost into the dirt. Made me think about Genesis and Cain and his disappointment when his farmer's produce hadn't bought God's favor. It made me wonder if there were some Judeo-Christian myths about how the Earth, when it was made, was made with God's first blessing, so all new earth was easier to grow things in, more fecund, more ready to the hand; but as one used it, it got steadily worse, until you had to do things like work rotted, smelly things into it in order to make it produce food again. As God's curse at leaving the Garden followed with Men's work to make food settled in, the earth got harder and more demanding.

I'm a little worried about the compost I did put in, as all the pictures show smiling people with faintly damp piles of stuff that's a lot like the compost in commercial bags. I wonder if they dried that stuff or something? Or whatever I had wasn't as well mixed or aerated as it should have been or something. I'll likely turn it again in a few days, just to make sure it's all mixed up. I did find a few earthworms in there, though, and maybe I'll add more, just to make the whole thing a bit better for growing things.

I brewed a quart of spice tea from Lucille's and it was great, even watered down significantly. Made drinking a full quart of water while shoveling really easy. In this heat that was a very good thing.

Halfway through my working I was really tired. Jet got really tired, too, from playing in the sandbox in the sunshine. We retired to the van again, and both went to sleep for about an hour. I then finished my earth turning, and Jet got up and locked himself in the van until I heard him and got him out. John came home about then, so I asked if I could have a shower, and John granted me the time.

I got clean. I started dinner (Annie's cheesy lasagna skillet dinner using Smart Ground for the "meat"), the boys came in and cleaned up as I made a salad, toasted bread, and cooked Jet's noodles. We all sat down and said grace and ate. Mmm... I should cook more often. We've been spending a bit more, lately, than we should have been and it would likely be cheaper and healthier for us if I cooked more often, I think.

Jet spent most of the evening in the bathtub. John got him dried, we watched some of Spy Kids II, and I spent a little time buying some decaf teas for iced tea for the summer. I am getting old enough to get badly affected by the caffeine after 4pm, and since it's iced, I don't think that the lack of taste will be that terrible. We'll see. At least I can then be broad enough to just get "Assam" or "green" and have none of the more subtle things to pick from. Simple and easy as pie.

Wow... it's amazing to see Colin (of Whose Line is it Anyway?) on Red Green!! :-)

I'm sore but satisfied. I'll probably wait a week of turning the soil before planting the plants, they're okay in the pots I have them in. Jet, though, is very impatient about planting his sunflowers and his "cumcubers". We'll probably get those in tomorrow. I just have to mark the spots for my herbs and tomatoes. Then we'll be okay.

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