Just as I was afraid we were going to get overwhelmed by summer and pattypan squash, the plants started getting really buggy and unhappy looking, and mildew started spreading. Fred yanked them all up – and I took a look in the freezer to reassure myself that we have enough squash put away until next year.
We do indeed.
I don’t feel like we got enough zucchini, and I prefer zucchini to yellow and pattypan squash, because I think it’s more versatile and less seedy. I’ve made a note in our half-assed gardening notebook that next year we should plant a lot more zucchini and maybe less summer and pattypan squash. Of course, last year I made a note that we should plant only one row of tomatoes, and this year we planted two rows, so god knows what’ll happen squash-wise next summer.
The tomatoes aren’t coming in nearly like I expected, despite all those damn plants. We had a very wet spring and then it got really dry, and then it rained a few days in a row, so we ended up with about twice as many split tomatoes as tomatoes we could use. The split tomatoes got chopped into quarters and tossed into a bucket, and the pigs and chickens are enjoying them. I’ve got to say that I think I really prefer cherry tomatoes to their larger brethren. They’re easier to just wash off and toss in a bowl, and I’ve been eating them every day with lunch (with little chunks of mozzarella), and just grabbing a handful of tomatoes every time I go by and snacking on them. SO GOOD.
I made a note in the notebook that next year we should have ONE row of tomatoes, and 2/3 of that row should be cherry tomatoes. We shall see about that.
The cucumbers are gone – I made a couple of batches of sweet pickle relish and some pickles (and really, how many pickles do we need? We’re not really big pickle eaters.), and then the bugs started taking over.
We’ve still got green beans coming in, and peppers, and one of these days we’ll possibly start getting eggplant. Okra’s coming in in dribs and drabs. I wait ’til I have a good handful of okra, then cut it up, oven-fry it, and let it flash freeze and toss it in a bag. I want to get a gallon bag of oven-fried okra, and I’m only about 1/3 of the way there.
All in all, this hasn’t been the best garden year as far as everything but the squash goes. Our second planting of corn will hopefully pan out better than the first planting. And hopefully we’ll keep on getting cherry tomatoes for a good long time.
Which reminds me – I have a new discovery this year. Dehydrated zucchini slices are REALLY good. They’re a little sweet, and Fred thinks they’d be good dipped in something (bleu cheese or ranch dressing, perhaps). I got a couple of large jars full of dehydrated zucchini chips, and wish I had more. I’ll have to keep that in mind for next summer.
It’s my goal, before the summer’s over, to get the foster kitten room whipped into shape. Now, I know the kittens don’t give a damn what the room looks like, but I do. It’s like when you have a baby – you decorate it for yourself, not really for the baby. Babies don’t give a shit whether they wear the same onesie every day and sleep in a drawer; they don’t need the $40 outfits and the $3,000 cribs, but we’re suckers, aren’t we?
My plan is this: I’ve already got the new chair for the foster room, and that was step one (by the way, that chair? Spanky thinks it’s THE BOMB. He spends a lot of time curled in the cat bed on that chair. He’s going to be a sad boy when there are kittens in there and the door is closed.).
Next, I want to get the walls decorated. I’ve started going through pictures of the fosters we’ve had, and saving some of the best pictures to print out. Originally I was going to frame them and hang them on the wall, but the idea of trying to keep all those picture frames straight makes my eyes cross. So I bought this tacky stuff that you can afix to the back of pictures (or whatever you want to mount) and hang it directly on the wall. That was my plan until last night when Fred and I talked about it, and now I’m thinking I might just do a collage on a piece of posterboard. I want to use at least one picture of every foster we’ve had, I think that would be neat.
There are a lot of cat wall decals available on Etsy, so I think I may pick a few of those to put on the wall and see how that looks. Maybe some bird decals for up high, and/ or some mice decals to put along the baseboard.
Then I want to get some curtains up in there. Actually, I’d like to get shades hung in there (blinds are nice, but I don’t like the cats messing with the strings, I don’t want them to hurt themselves with them, and when we have blinds in there, I tend to yank them all the way up so the sun can show through. With shades, they can roll up out of the way and look okay) and then some curtains. I’m sure I could find some cute cat-themed fabric with which to make curtains. I’m not looking to make anything fancy, surely I can get something passable sewn? How hard can it be to sew a few straight seams, right?
(Don’t answer that. Let me live in my dream world.)
And then I’d like Fred to make me something like this. Wouldn’t that be neat?
So yeah, I have plans. I don’t know that they’re all going to work out the way I want, but I’m going to give it a try and we’ll see what happens.
It still blows me away that when we first met Newt, he wouldn’t let us touch him at all. Now he’s the most relaxed, laid-back cat in the house. He loves to be petted, and he makes himself at home wherever he goes. He’s more of an inside cat than Maxi is, actually. The other cats pick on Maxi (well, to be completely truthful she’s the one that starts 9/10ths of the battles with her hissing if anyone glances in her direction), but Newt they pretty much leave alone. I guess it’s hard to pick on a cat who says “You want to kick my ass? Sure, okay. Wake me up when it’s over.”
2008: Out of curiosity – anyone still think we won’t eat those pigs?
2007: No entry.
2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.
2004: No entry.
2002: No entry.
2001: No entry.
2000: Jemima J.