At least that's about how much a nice new camera costs. I'd been hoping to get mine repaired but, instead, any money we've been squeezing out has been going to things like vet bills for our lovable-yet-useless canine (do you have any idea how much time and money it takes to care for an aging and uncertainly diagnosed dog? I do now; $350.00 and I hope that's it, because that is his limit, sadly.) and feeding a hungry automobile a balanced diet of things like tires and bearings. However, the change to cool weather has been a blessing in the car department. We no longer are roasting in our A/C free and broken window environment. It's cold, and we have a heater that works. Life is good.
We have been blessed with really great weather, for the most part. So that I am able to work outside most days. I've been moving gooseberry bushes which were declining every year. They are now in a new and improved location and awaiting mulch, which I hope to obtain tomorrow - right after a visit to the car repair shop.
The man-child, Michael, is growing out of clothes faster than I can find them. I buy shoes two sizes too big, and he's outgrown them in 8 months. Every time I look at him, I swear he's taller. He'll outgrow me in a very short amount of time. We hit thrift stores again this week, hoping to find him a winter jacket. We found some working coats, but nothing for casual town wear.
However, he was absolutely thrilled to get a trench coat and two casual suit jackets today, tweed and corduroy. The thrift store was selling all their coats for half price, two dollars and fifty cents each, and these are classics that will not go out of style. We bought them big.... here's hoping they last.
It took a lot of straw, but all the veggie and herb beds are thoroughly mulched. We have some experimental winter crops growing out there; peas and Swiss chard. I want to see how long I can keep them growing by just covering them on cold nights. I dug up some of the pepper plants and potted them, bringing them indoors at night.
I am also growing lots of things in the house. It looks a bit like a greenhouse in here, but that's kind of fun. We hope to get the real greenhouse going soon. I've been saving up, here and there, and I think I have enough to do it, if I can find the time in between everything else.
We are getting some raspberry rootings this week, and I'm so excited that we'll have raspberries again. So I've got a 90 foot row to dig, fertilize, and mulch when they arrive. I found a great deal on some new strawberry plants on eBay to replace the ones that did not make it for some reason. I hope the soil is fine. But two of the varieties I had planted gave up the ghost very early. We got 50 strawberry plants for only 12 dollars. I'm so glad to have put them in the ground, so we have a better chance at a good berry harvest next year.
I found a place that I can order grapevines from next spring at only 3 dollars each. That's an amazing price. If I am able, I will rip out all 112 vines that are out there now, and replace them with only 28 Mars cultivars. Mars vines have the greatest resistance to black rot, so it would cut down significantly on the amount of slaving away in comparison to actual ingestion of grapes. Ratios. This is why I studied Algebra.
I'm rooting blackberries for sharing and replanting next spring. Having another go at rooting figs. Oh, that reminds me, I still need to cover them for winter. Yiketh already.
And lady bugs wars are on. With the warmer sunny days in the 60's, it's prime breeding weather. Today we finally succumbed and sprayed all around the doors with Raid - garden fresh scent, of course. So you can lie to yourself all the way to your death bed. It could not be helped. I was spending an hour a day, just trying to keep up on vacuuming them up.
OK, Lots more going on, but without photos, it's just no fun to write about them, and harder still to illustrate how we are doing things, so I'll leave it with this:
Thanksgiving - 17 days
Days begin to get longer - 41 days
Christmas - 47 days
Get out your seed catalogs - 57 days
Average daily temp begins to level and climb - 60
Order your seeds - 71 days
Not long at all until those crocus are pushing up.