Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Changes and chances

I haven't posted very much about the gardening. Well, if you can really call it gardening this year-it's more like slo-mo growth. Week after week of cool cloudy weather, with a few days summer sun here and there does not make for any sort of yeild. When I started this blog, I had a prize winning dill plant, and this year, they all remain knee high. I have only a few baby zucchini on the dozen plants-most of them seem to be in "do nothing" mode, and even giving them a boost isn't helping.

I have some decent sized cukes in the greenhouse, and lots of small green tomatoes. The small broccoli heads are ready for eating, with some coming along. A few of the cabbages look like they are thinking about growing heads, but the brussel sprouts just remain the same size. Flowers are trying to form on the green beans, but the peas are just flat lousy....and usually peas are a given up here. The only peas really looking good are the "spear-a-mint" (as my son called it, for "experiment") in the greenhouse-three pots stuffed with peas who have already grown taller than the outdoor ones planted three weeks before. The flowers look marginally okay....very slow as well and quite a bit smaller than last year at this time. Heck, I have hardly had any blooms on my roses-but I sure have buds! Spuds are creeping along and I should have a few blooms here over the next two weeks. Again, a large disappointment, along with the onions which I accidentally overwatered. Just chanced to be a poor year, and nothing to be done about it.

The new woodstove was installed last week, and we have been experimenting with it's operation. Boy have things changed since the 70s! This one has "catalytic combustion" and once stoked, lasts easily 24 hours....and boy does it put out the heat! We have been trying fans in different places to move the heat around, and we're getting a handle on that-but it's taking some getting used to a warm house with warm floors :) But I won't kid you, it's a tremendous amount of hard work, putting up firewood. My wonderful husband has done the majority, since the logs were so large (and green) that I could not even pick them up once sawn to length! I run the borrowed splitter and stack, along with my son. The young boy does it grudgingly of course, but manages to be a big help with a bit of motivation.

I am working to get a couple vanloads of hay organized, before we get zapped with additional freight surcharges. One van ordered already and half of a second spoken for. I too, need to get a good supply on hand because I never know exactly how many horses I will be feeding each winter.

Chubs is doing great....he is dropping a bit of weight due to being so active with the three mares, and is providing all sorts of comic relief out there. Poor old coot. A few more months is all he has and I am thrilled he has them on real pasture, loose to romp, graze and just plain be a horse. What more could a person ask for?

Wingnut may have found a new person....I am very hopeful that the kind hearted and very experienced person who came to see her, will follow through. I imagine we'll be hauling her into Anchorage in the next week or two. You know, I am going to miss her antics and I know for a fact that my totally, completely non horsey husband is going to be really depressed about this. It is the best thing that could happen for her, she needs someone to shower her with attention, and help her become the horse I know she could be. For me, it's amazing to see the changes in this horse over a couple of years. So Wingnut has a chance at a wonderful future, and more capable hands I could not find.

Another boarder has not been so lucky....facing financial disaster, she must offer up her mare for sale. I really feel for the horse and the owner, as they really clicked. I hope they both come out the other side in a good place. As a small part of this, I am going to be carpooling into work on some days. I will welcome the companionship, and look forward to it. I have often thought it just silly that no one has organized a ride share out my way-but honestly I can't think of one place where a whole bunch of vehicles could be parked. Perhaps some enterprising individual can figure it out, as the small buses that commute to Anchorage every day have a waiting list of nearly 1000. Wow, who would have thought that Alaskans would give up their pickup trucks?

1 comment:

Lori said...

Oh, am I dreading the heating oil bill for this coming winter.....if I can just keep my mom's fingers off the thermostat (she likes it cozy). I can remember when we could fill our 1000 gallon tank for under $1000. Now, 300 gallons is over $1000! Will be bucking up more wood around here, too. Have plenty of "horse kill" trees that can be recycled into BTUs.

I don't even want to think about having to give up a horse.
Who knows, might be getting back into the horse and buggy days again anyway. Guess I better start looking for a buggy!