scififanatic: (Color blocks)
( Apr. 17th, 2009 07:54 pm)
Today, I took to the task of thinning out the lettuce. Once I got going, I was focused. I knew the plants needed to be 6 inches from one sprout to another; armed with my tape measure, I worked away the forest of green.

I ended up with a nice heaping of baby lettuce, which I promptly washed off and used as my dinner for the evening.

Coming back from vacation, I have yet to light the fire beneath my jogging feet but I have done a better job of eating healthier. I'm thinking Sunday will be the day I force myself back into jogging. But absolutely no more desserts, fatty meals at restaurants, or midnight snacks.

That's not to say that I can't treat myself every now and then each week but my waistline could definitely use a break from eating out.

I used a delicious sesame and ginger vinegarette. It was tangy and sweet but not overly sweet. The greens weren't bitter at all and they had a nice light crunch. I combined the bed of baby greens with some chicken and a roll of fresh bread. Divine! McDonald's and all those greasy fast food joints--eat your heart out! :)

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scififanatic: (purple flower--black woman)
( Apr. 13th, 2009 03:20 pm)
I missed my garden while vacationing in Virginia the way a person misses her cat or dog or spouse or child.

Since I have none of those, I missed my garden. Things are growing so well that I think I need to build a new gardening box. That would also mean buying tons more of rich dirt from Home Depot. I just can't fathom the task of thinning the plants out (plant assassination). I'd like to give them all a chance but that's ridiculous. No one has that much space unless you're living on a plantation, which I'm not.

Ugh. So this week I plan to expand in some vegetable areas and thin back the lettuce because it's growing like crazy.

Part of me feels awful for not trusting the earth. I planted way more lettuce seeds than I probably should have because I didn't believe this many would take to the soil. Stupid me. The research I read didn't make lettuce sound so easy to grow but it's doing better than fine, only for now. If I don't do something soon, they'll all die. Not sure what to do but I've got to figure it out.

I'm also worried about the carrots. They look a little weak to me. The gardening articles I read said that onions and carrots are great companions so I sewed them a row away but maybe I didn't make enough room between the rows.

I was worried about the radishes. I noticed holes in their leaves. Some insects are eating them. Jade Park told me this doesn't affect the radishes, which made me feel better. The insects get to eat and later, so will I. Everyone wins.

The herbs are doing well. The mint is barely breaking through and the basil isn't ready for thinning yet. Still, I've got a major task with the lettuce and carrots. Just a few pics:

RADISH




ONIONS & CARROTS


TOMATO


SPINACH


SQUASH




LETTUCE


EGGPLANT
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scififanatic: (purple flower--black woman)
( Apr. 1st, 2009 10:51 am)
After freaking out and being reassured by Jade Park that the radishes would be fine--I woke up this morning to garden goodness!












I have other thoughts about what gardening is teaching me, mainly that I worry too much but for now I will focus on the goodness of it all.
scififanatic: (purple flower--black woman)
( Mar. 27th, 2009 08:05 pm)
Things have been rocky for me these last six weeks. I've been wrestling with a lot of demons but I'm slowly working my way out of the tangled mess of my mind, my fears. So far, my fitness goals the first quarter of the year have been shot to hell.

That means I've got 3 quarters of the year left to turn it around. I'm not one of those who believes the first time you break a New Year's resolution that you should forget about it until next year. No, I'll keep trying. I'm that stubborn. Also, my doctor felt I needed to take a different approach to my fitness goals.

Getting stuck in a routine doesn't work for me. For about 6 months last year, I worked out regularly and lost quite a few pounds, which I gained back this year. This time, my doctor suggested that I focus less on fitness and more on being active and being healthy (more so in mind).

I joined a hiking group, but it's not a group of die-hards who would feel weighed down by beginners. We're all beginners and we learn together. There are only three of us right now, all women but I find it comforting to meet with them, talk with them, explore with them, and just walk in silence with them.

In addition to hiking, I've also taken up a new activity--gardening. Partly inspired by the desire to move my body more often, partly inspired by my grad schoolmate's, Jade Park, experiences with gardening first here, then here, and finally here, and partly inspired by what my writing process has been teaching me this year--to write slowly, to listen to my environment and what it's telling me.

I spent six hours in the garden today. It didn't seem like a lot while I was working until my back screamed at me during dinner tonight. Screamed in a good way, of course. "You remembered us!" my muscles thanked me.

I cleaned, prepped, planted, and then I freaked out, much like the way I write: What if I messed up? Did I leave something out?! Will this work???...and so on. I learned today that I can't worry about the end product. All I can do is pour my heart, pour my best into the process with all the love and enthusiasm I've got. What happens later is really out of my hands.

And so, today, I let go and enjoyed myself. I let all of yesterday's worries dry out beneath the sun. I got my fingers dirty because gardening gloves just get in the way. I laughed, brushed away the spiders when they lost their way on my arms, pressed the seeds into the soil a quarter inch deep, a half inch deep, sometimes 3 inches deep; and each time I went into the earth I also went inside of myself to plant the things I've been denying myself lately: love, support, encouragement. "You are capable," the wind whispered.

Yes, I am. I am capable of great things and best of all--everyone on this earth is capable of the same thing. So, it is with great pride that I display my plots. Whether they grow or not is not the point because then I'd be missing the best discovery of all: I am capable.

I planted eggplant, tomato, basil, cucumber, radish, lettuce, spinach, and squash. Pictures beneath the cut )

I also planted mint, which freaked me out once I found out they're greedy with space. Who new something so sweet could be so sneaky? Luckily Jade Park reminded me that I can keep them under control by plucking them when they sprout. My mom planted onions, carrots, thyme, and parsley.

Tomorrow, I'm going to work in the garden again to plant brussels sprouts, artichoke, and bell pepper.

The earth is good.
.

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