Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Spring getting sprung

Really busy now, we've gone from being too early to do things to being behind schedule in just a couple days. Blame it on the weather. Plus we're still recovering from all the medical stuff we had to do in January and February.

We've been rolling up plastic mulch and prepping ground so far. Rain supposed to be in on Thursday, just in time to keep us from plowing again. We've got to get the tractor over to our second farm but that thing is a beast to drive on the road, poor brakes and the steering ain't great either. Only 2 weeks until we should have corn in the ground and our early tomato planting is rapidly becoming not so early.

Dad's transplanting tomato sprouts right now for our second field. Eggplant are sprouting too. Melons and cantaloupe will go in the greenhouse shortly.

Dad's been feeling pretty good, still a little tired from the chemo. 2 more treatments in this series but no one will explain what if anything comes next. Pfizer has a new pancreatic cancer drug called "Sutent" but I'm afraid to even even bring it up with our oncologist because of the price and because she probably hasn't heard of it yet. Sometimes doctors get on my nerves.

But at least it is a lovely day with many fruits trees in flower and I-5 is rumbling with traffic. A good sign that business is still happening.

Well, gotta go feed mom's birdies. Y'all a have a super day.

Friday, March 27, 2009

A warm spring Friday

Had great weather today. Kyle was here a bit before 10 so I've been pretty productive today. Surprising how much better my day goes when I'm motivated by having to keep someone else busy. I ran the tractor through last year's tomato field, using the ripper to loosen black plastic mulch. Kyle had the delightful job of getting filthy pulling the plastic the last little bit out of the dirt.

The chemo really hit dad today, a little dizziness while we made breakfast for starters. "Chemo brain" a mild form of confusion set in a while later as he was working on one of our trailers. Then he had a couple of heavy surges of fatigue before lunch. As mom and I told him, he just kicked back in his comfy chair for a while. After lunch he got his legs back under him and proceeded to work on the greenhouse for the rest of the afternoon. We'll just chalk this down as the price the medicine exacts and be grateful it is mild so far.

The setting sun is painting Mt Fielder a golder shade of green. The plum trees at the bottom of the field are bright white with flowers, they smelled so good this afternoon when I was running the tractor down there.

Wishing you all nature's splendor and the happiness that goes with it.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Acorn woodpeckers

These are like the clowns of our bird neighborhood. Click the pic for a bigger view.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Almost spring

Had a delightful visit with uncle Jerry & aunt Carol yesterday. Looking forward to the same today. Turned sunny in the afternoon looks like it'll be sunny today as soon as the fog clears.

The ground is too wet to do anything with now and it's too early to sprout too much in the greenhouse so we're sort of in a holding pattern. Good time for the visit fortunately.

Tomorrow is the equinox! So hard to believe it's arrived. Seems like we didn't have a winter at all, not that it wasn't cold. Just too busy to pay attention.

Not much else to report. Y'all have a great day.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Spring busy

2 days out from spring, starting to get real busy now. Tomatoes are warm out in the nursery greenhouse. Will probably need to do some work on the tractor soon, before we start working corn ground.

Uncle Jerry & aunt Carol will be stopping by this morning. They'll be here for a couple of days and thank goodness the weather is pretty nice.

We're all feeling pretty well. Dad still gets little bouts of fatigue but this week should shape up nice with no doctor's appointments.

Wishing y'all a super fun day.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Rainy Sunday

Acorn woodpecker at the tall feeder. The birds have been really active in the front yard.

Dad put the propane burner on about 3 hours ago out in the new greenhouse and we just went and checked. It was a nice warm about 80 degrees. So we won't have a problem keeping the nursery plants happy. Dad's downstairs planting a few hundred more tomato seeds to make up for some that got burned by a little over-zealous fertilizing. Gotta watch that miracle grow on little plants.

I've been trying to get my winter reading finished, only about 6 serious books I'm working on, 10-12 I don't care if I finish or not. Going to get a lot harder after the 20th.

Here's a pic of the new greenhouse:

Hope y'all are having a great day.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Oh! what a lovely day

So nice and warm and sunny for a winter day :)
Got a pile of slash and trash burned up quick, the back wall on the nursery greenhouse and now dad's working on the door. Just the small east wall panel to cover and the door/west wall panel and we'll be ready to move the tomatoes out there tomorrow.

Wishing you all such a fine and finer day.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Suspended Wednesday morning

Mom and dad just left to have dad's blood panel taken. I'm working a little on some more website design for Tracey. Gotta do the dishes in a bit but I'm, like, so lazy! Short about an hour of sleep last night so I might take a nap before I dig into chores. Also need to do some reading this morning while it is still cold, however I'm not really in the mood for deep thought right now but I'm also out of any good fiction. Probably still enjoy "The will to believe" but not sure if I have the energy for philosophy. Maybe after a short nap?

Anyways, hope everybody out there is feeling fine and finding happiness today.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Mundane Monday

Got started outside late due to the cold temps this morning. I got some good website design done on Tracy's Chicy Hair-Ums site. Still trying to get the cat collar page done, maybe before tonight is out.

Once it got warm enough dad and I started on the greenhouse sprouting table. Still to windy to get the plastic on, plus we were waiting to see if mom could find a clearer grad of poly in town. No luck there. We'll have to go with what we have and lose a little quality on our sprouts I'm afraid. Should be fine.

We finished the afternoon cleaning up and pruning in the orchard.

Just now finished having dinner, leftover chinese take-out from yesterday, yummy!

The mountain is covered in patches of mottled, subdued and bright sunlight shifting with the clouds and the evening glory. So lovely, I wish I could share it but I doubt even a good digital camera would capture the effect.

Wishing you each and all a full belly and a contented mind.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Lonely in the house

It doesn't happen to me very often, most of the time when I'm alone I am centered. But mom and dad took off for his infusion this afternoon. I took a nap with some smooth jazz playing and when I got up I just couldn't help but feel a bit lonely. Winter often gives me these little challenges of depression.

Dad and I got the rafters finished on the nursery greenhouse this afternoon. Just wires, plastic, door and tables left to finish and we'll be done with that. If the weather stays good we should have it done no later than Saturday. 3-400 tomatoes already sitting in the sprouting room downstairs waiting to go.

When dad and I came in from working on the greenhouse he was pretty fatigued but we both perked up because mom had fresh peanut butter cookies warm from the oven. It was even better because we came in just as it started to shower.

The acorn woodpecker just took off from the tall bird feeder. He's such a lively clown like character. My stupid black cat tried bringing in a junco he'd killed. He's got at least 2 kinds of food to choose from but he still has to snack on our poor little feathered guests. Fortunately not very often and I don't mind so much because at least he eats them straight away instead of just playing with them.

Got a little reading to do then I think I'll wash the dishes for mom. Always like to lighten her burden a little when they have to go into town.

Hope everyone's day has a dash of sweetness and light.

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Sort of a melancholy Wednesday

Just the classic rainy day blues.

Afraid I wasted a good day getting little work done. Read quite a bit and did a few chores but my body knows it didn't work hard enough. It rained quite a bit today but that's just sort of an excuse. I shouldn't second guess winter, it was a good day for reading after all. Some days I just feel a little anxious I suppose.

Dad had a good blood panel again today. So he'll get another chemo dose tomorrow. The doctor was happy with all his stats, so that's always a hopeful thing. He even gained a couple of pounds, hooray!

After mom and dad got home we had lunch, they brought home Burger King. Yummy but often gives me an upset stomach. After that we all took an awesome nap, it felt so good. Then we got up and took a 3/4 mile walk. It's raining pretty good again right now.

Well, not much else to report. Hope all of you had a fun and productive day.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Busy Monday

Kinda got a late start. Had a good breakfast and all of us feeling pretty good after a lazy but solemn Sunday. The weather was heavy enough to keep us in all day yesterday. I spent a good chunk chatting with old friends and family over at Facebook. Thanks again to Rae Ann for inviting me over there. It's really neat to feel the unfurling of once dormant connections. Friendships renewed, old slights forgiven & forgotten, family routines weaving their own rhythm &etc. An illusion on some levels I suppose but better than nothing at all, and genuinely touching at times. But also sometimes just plain silly! What is life, if not a jest?

Today dad and I got the greenhouse blown up again. Then after lunch we noticed that the dirt in the greenhouse was dry enough to use for tamping in the posts. So I carried 2 buckets of dry tamping dirt from inside the air inflated greenhouse to the site of the nursery greenhouse (only about 40-50 feet). We installed the 10 post (thanks again Travis!) and dad tamped them in while I shook dirt from the buckets. Another short break for walking with mom and a drink and we went back to install the extensions for the back of the frame. That means we're well past 1/3 finished on that greenhouse!

So now I'm kinda tired. Feeling good though as I'm pretty sure everyone here is. Wishing you all that same good feeling and a little jot of happiness besides.

catching up after the weekend

Had a good weekend. Kyle came out to help Saturday and really was useful getting wires untied from the tomato poles. We finished that huge job and then he, dad and I rolled up the first 2 rows of wire. There were several hawks, osprey or vultures in attendance high in the sky. I know at one point an osprey was working the area 'cause I could hear his cry.

Sunday was lazy and lots of reading. Dad didn't feel well, maybe had a low grade infection but his fever broke overnight and he's feeling good this morning, thank goodness. His chemo went well Thursday but as expected it beat him down pretty bad. Made him pretty fatigued.

The greenhouse was down this morning, looks like a puddle formed on the plastic over the air inlet and blocked the fan so I just unplugged it around 6:30 and we'll get out there to fix it in a bit. Going to work on the small wood-framed greenhouse again today. We made the mistake of not putting the poles in immediately after Gary dug the holes so now everything is so wet we can't tamp them in. We'll probably have to go with stakes for the frame instead. What a hassle. But like mom says, shouldn't expect anything to be simple or easy. Our own fault for procrastinating.

The sun is playing tag with the cloud shadows on the hillsides. I suppose I should get out there but my natural inertia is slowing me down.

Hope y'all have a fun and productive day.