Chilly

It’s only 38°F here this morning with rain falling, but I’ll focus on the bright side which is that I don’t need any tools to remove the rain like some of my neighbors to the north. 🙂

Trying to find the bright side is what I keep trying to do as I start Day 43, but some days are more challenging than others. We’re well, have enough supplies, and are keeping relatively busy so I’m extremely grateful for that.

The seedlings are all doing well, and this morning will find me in the garage repotting tomato plants into bigger pots.

Outside, I’ve managed to rake most of the leaves, finished as much as I could on a downed pine tree, moved some perennials around, and we even got 90′ of edging done.

Today, I’m ordering some metal edging to put in when the weather clears up at the end of the week. A curbside pickup with the truck will work out nicely.

Tulips and daffodils have not bloomed yet, but I have a small group of bloodroot that make me smile. Besides the beautiful little blossoms, I like knowing this plant traces back to the days of Native Americans. Everything else is still working to break through.

Last year, we built two new raised beds. Over the weekend, I added amendments and got them ready to go and planted Yukon Gold potatoes. As soon as the weather allows, I’ll be filling up these beds.

On rainy days like today, I’ll also take advantage of a learning opportunity by tuning in via Zoom to the Master Gardeners of Northern Virginia: The Hospitable Gardener: Welcoming butterflies to your garden.

On Wednesday, I’ll eat lunch and listen to Lunch in the Garden with Cornell University Rensselaer County: Easy to grow flowering trees and shrubs. Last week, I listened to their session on soil, and they presented some good tips on purchasing in bulk or bags.

These gardening webinars are free and open to the public. All you have to do is register, they send an email confirmation, and you link up the day of the class. It’s easy and a good way to enhance your gardening skills.

When I do venture out, I’m seeing more people wearing face coverings, and I thank each and every one of them.

NH is reporting 1,864 cases of Covid-19 with 60 deaths. The state of emergency order has been extended, but so far the stay at home order set to expire on May 4th has not been extended. We’ll see how this evolves. It will be interesting to see how people respond once the restrictions are lifted. As they keep telling us, it’s a marathon and not a sprint.

Stay safe, friends, and by all means share what’s happening at your house. Staying connected is helping us get through this. 🙂

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Day 36

Happy Monday! I hope the sun is shining where you are because I’m relishing the fact that we are having a beautiful day which means I’ll be outside for a couple of hours which is good for my body and my soul. 😎

I hope this finds each and every one of you and your loved ones safe and sound. We are fine. We have plenty of food and supplies and have adjusted to the new curbside pickup for just about everything. I still miss people, but doesn’t everyone.

I’ve been enjoying spring trying to step forward amidst the snow and the temps in the 20’s some days.

I have one Hellebore plant so that means I cut each bloom and bring it in to float and enjoy. I do think I need to order a couple more, don’t you? 🙂

Outdoors, I’m still raking and using my Craftsman battery operated pruning saw which is one of the coolest tools I have.

Inside, my seedlings are doing well. They are doing so well that I’ve transplanted them all at least once.

When I first did the plantings, I threw a few beans in and have enjoyed watching them take off, and I mean take off. They needed some support so I planted them in old hanging planters, added some bamboo supports and wired two dollar store waste cans together to make a stand.

When you’re on Day 36 of being at home full time, little things assume you. 🙂

I’ll transplant them outside after it warms up, will watch to see if they actually produce beans, but it doesn’t matter because it has just been a bit of gardening fun.

I’ve been sewing on a gift, reading, planning a couple of outdoor DIY projects, and getting ready to order an additional Craftsman battery operated tool – a hedge trimmer. As I mature, the relationship between me and gasoline powered pull starts has lost some of its thrill. I love grabbing a tool off the wall, slapping a battery in, and going off to do my job. It’s worth every penny.

Do you have plans for the week as we continue to stay at home? Stay safe friends.

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Day 29

I’ve been trying to write a post, but mostly I’ve sat here looking at the blinking cursor because I’m struggling with something to say. Some bloggers have been energized by the availability of time to post, but I readily admit I’m at the opposite end of that spectrum. Each day just drifts into the next.

I’m staying in, staying safe, doing my part to keep you safe, but damn do I miss people and life as we knew it. 🙂

I was able to get out and rake a few more leaves last week, but no photos because all that is poking through are day lily and iris green leaves. We’re getting steady rain right now with winds forecasted for this afternoon. Living in a state that is 80+% covered in trees causes everyone including me to hope the power stays on.

My seedlings are coming along. I’ve separated and transplanted most into their own cells. Watching them grow is certainly enjoyable and gives one hope.

I kept busy last week sewing in the afternoons on a wall hanging made from the scraps that I used to make cushion covers on the porch. I’m happy with it, but now I need to come up with a project for this week. One positive is I’ve sure used more from my small stash of fabric than I ever remember. (Weird light on the lower right is the grow light.)

So, what is the first appointment you are going to make when we are allowed some moving about? For me, it will be a haircut. Who knew the thought of potentially getting a haircut could be so exciting.  Right behind that call will be one to a friend and hopefully we can go to lunch and have a good chat across a table instead of on the phone or texting. 🙂

Last week I mentioned that ‘stay at home’ made me think of living on Mars. This week, when I glanced at the cardboard box that a mailbox came in, my head hurt trying to figure out why a company located in CA would need to put “Made on Earth in China.” Hmm, but then again, it doesn’t take much to make my head hurt these days. 🙂 Stay safe, friends.

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Mars

Been wondering if we’ve all moved to another planet? I have. I’ve also relished conversations with friends to hear they are well, and I’ve certainly appreciated sparks of blog humor here and there. Thank you for that.

Face masks? Have them and using them? The first time I wore one, I was the only, the second time, I was one of four. Thursday at a small farm grocery store that also had the new sneeze guards installed at their checkouts, I was one of about 90% of the shoppers. On Saturday though, I did a curbside pickup at Tractor Supply, which worked quite well, and noticed only three, and they were doing a really brisk business. I’m pretty sure that is not a good thing for all of us.

Hellebore or Lenten rose

I’ve gotten outside to rake leaves several times and that is good for my soul. Normally, I hate raking leaves, but this year it seems like a real treat.

I also planted a few seeds indoors and had to be creative with how to do it. In past years, I’ve hauled down a large shelving unit that works great, but as each year passes that is more of a challenge. So, I used what I had which was a planter on my porch, a light, and a timer. What is wrapped around it? An emergency blanket that helps hold the light and heat in but aluminum foil would work too.

Where you able to find seed potatoes this year? If so, check out this blog post about determinate versus indeterminate potato types.

I’m here 24/7 like you, but I’m having difficulty keeping up with blogs unless I want to sit in front of the screen hour after hour which I don’t. It seems like everyone is blogging more frequently and those that have been off the airways are back on, welcome back by the way. I clear out my email, come back a few hours later and there are 50-60 new emails. I can’t keep up with everything so if I miss a post, know that I’m gardening or quilting on my rabbit wall hanging.

I also normally try to steer away from politics in all aspects of my life, yes, I vote, but I really don’t want to debate it. If your post includes slamming and damming of whoever during this pandemic, I’m skipping over it and will circle back around on your next one. Watching news and seeing refrigerated units stacked in a parking lot to store bodies that are beloved family members is more than my mind can cope with. I’m choosing to think that we are all trying to do our best in an unprecedented world-wide situation.

The warnings are severe this week. Stay safe, stay in, pray at home, God will understand.

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End of March

As we close out March and head into April, it is a time in all of our lives like no other or as a VT blogger noted – we’re living history.

Each state seems to have its own challenges and directives. NH went from ‘social distancing’ to ‘stay at home’ as of last Friday. We had already been staying at home since returning from South Carolina so we are at Day 15 today.

Outside gardening is off the potential list of things to do because it is raining almost every day which also means it’s gray dark and gloomy which matches my mood sometimes. 🙂 I ordered seeds and two Somerset Seedless Grape vines, but they haven’t arrived yet.

Speaking of ordering, are you doing more online ordering from your favorite chair. I am, and it is kind of alarming how easy it is to rack up the dollars spent, but in this situation it keeps me from having to visit the big box stores.

I’m doing okay with sewing and even have a finish to report.

A couple of friends had made a tissue paper pieced wall Christmas tree, and I really liked it. So, I pieced it while at the beach and quilted and bound it here at home.

I’m happy with it, and look forward to pulling it out when the holidays roll around.

The pattern I used is called ‘A Little Bit Shorter Tall Tree’ because it comes in two sizes.

Today, I’ll start a new project. Hmm, sewing, quilting or embroidery, I’ll have to decide.

I’m not usually a telephone talker. Why? I guess I got so burned out when working that I viewed not having to talk on the telephone as a perk of retirement. But, during this issue, I’m forcing myself to call friends and check in with them because I always feel better after hearing their voices and sharing a few chuckles.

A big applause to those states who set up roadblocks and went door to door to stop Covidiots from moving around the country and extending this process. You’d think we could all understand what ‘stay at home’ means, but apparently not. As one ME blogger friend noted, even duct tape can’t fix stupid.

Are you craving any food items that you don’t have on hand? I wish I had the ingredients to make key lime pie in a jar but guess I’ll go with apple crisp shortbread bars until I make an early morning senior grocery run. I’m going to be honest, once this is over, I will never be grocery shopping at 5:45 a.m. ever again.

So, anything interesting going on at your house this week? Take care, stay home, and above all stay safe.

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What day is it?

Day 8 of our staying at home.

Have I kept busy, yes, and I’m probably doing the same stuff you are doing. The closets are organized, all my fabric is color coded, masks have been sewn for grocery shopping, the attic looks the best it ever has, and we’ve shredded every old document. 🙂

So, what’s left to talk about except emotions.

The #1 thing that absolutely sends my blood pressure skyrocketing are the college kids on the beach ignoring recommendations for social distancing. Every one of us who have abided by state directives will now be asked to stay home longer because of their contracting it which has already started.

Will we learn from this experience?

  • Be willing to pay a higher price for items to be produced in the US where we could have ready access to the supply chain?
  • The environment is getting a break from all of our vehicles parked, but will that be a positive or a negative with current climate change. We’ll see.
  • Will we all have a few extra rolls of TP just in case?
  • After being told repeatedly that we’ll all expire if we don’t eat organic, we’re now reminded that we could expire if we don’t have some high sodium packaged and canned foods on the shelf.
  • The realization that the food we eat is not produced by the grocery store but by a farmer, and s/he needs our native pollinators so stop using so many chemicals on your lawn just to make it green and weed free.
  • The importance of over-the-road truckers and the role they play in our daily lives.
  • Saying thank you to all the people working in our grocery stores.
  • Veggie seeds are something we might want to have on hand especially since Johnny’s and Burpee are sold out of many. Can you say a lot of victory gardens in 2020?
  • That rainy day fund everyone was suppose to set aside wasn’t just idle talk.
  • Will brick and mortar stores survive after we all learn to shop online?
  • Washing our hands with soap and water really was something we should have been doing all along.

I’m also grateful for…

  • All the people who have pulled together and stayed home to try and bring a halt to this issue.
  • The generous folks checking in on seniors who do not have family, and neighbors helping neighbors.
  • Access to grocery stores for items I need even if some I want are not available.
  • Enough food for three meals a day.
  • The option to read, sew and garden.
  • The blogging community that allows us all to stay in touch and keep a small piece of our normal life.
  • Faith that we will be able to weather this storm, regroup, and learn to live again.

Sending each and every one of you best wishes for a safe week. ❤️Your plans for this week?

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Home Sweet Home

We headed north over the weekend. We’ll miss the last two weeks with our winter friends and all the fun and laughter, but it was time because of the reality of the situation we are all in.

What we saw along the way was certainly different. There were a lot of trucks rolling which is not the normal case on a weekend. The Hampton Inn staff where we stayed were spraying and wiping down all surfaces. We saw people stopping at fast food restaurants to use restrooms and buy food, but they were voluntarily eating in their vehicles in the parking lot. At a rest stop, one family of five was eating their own food out of the back of their vehicle. It reminded me of the pre-fast food days.

Once home, one of the strangest things is the lack of traffic. It’s pretty eerie.

Have I been out? Yes, once to get groceries and seeds – food for the body and food for the soul. 🙂 Today, I’m going out to pick up a prescription but will be using the drive through option for the first time.

I went to our local Hannaford grocery store to avoid a larger crowd at Walmart. Many of the shelves were bare, but I was able to put together enough food for a couple of weeks.

I’ve survived growing up very poor, sat with a baby in the gas lines of the oil crisis of 1973, worked through the night of Y2K, grieved with the nation on 9/11, and lost money in the 2008 financial crisis. But, never, did I think the most wanted item in America in a flu pandemic and the topic of conversation would be toilet paper. I hope you have some because there definitely is not any out there to buy. 🙂

So, what now? Well, we’ll pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and figure out how to use time productively. There will be no ‘books’ to read, but there are thousands to download from the closed library. There is an attic to reorganize so we can get insulation installed when this is over and a garage that could be painted. I have sewing and quilting projects, some seed starting and gardening webinars.

Is it weird knowing I ‘have’ to stay home for three weeks? Yes. But, I will survive. Besides, where would I go – everything, and I mean everything is closed. 🙂

So, I’ve put on my positive hat, hunkered down, and will do my share because we’re all depending upon each other to survive this and return to what we call normalcy. But before you go, let us know how you’re spending your time because we may pick up some good ideas.

Now, if Mother Nature would just stop the snow falling outside because she’s tending to tick me off. 🙂

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News

I’ve deviated from my normal 30 minutes of local news with this virus situation, and I’ve been reminded why it is I don’t normally watch more than that.

You have to work to find real facts and statistics and when you do, sometimes they don’t add up or make any sense to me unless it is some kind of new age math.

For a little perspective, I want them to publicize that influenza has caused 291,000-646,000 deaths world wide and 12-61,000 deaths in the US annually since 2010.

The Governor of South Carolina this morning stated that “…each individual is responsible for their own actions and personal hygiene. If you feel sick, stay home, and contact your doctor.” In NH, a man who tested positive and was told to stay home decided to ignore that advice and headed out to a public event where he infected others. Too bad there isn’t an option available to protect ourselves from stupid people.

But, of all the stupid stuff I’ve read including the source of the virus is Corona beer, here is the topper.

“Those contemplating a cruise need to consider the prospect of a fellow passenger testing positive for COVID-19 and then being quarantined for several weeks on the vessel. 

If people die from an illness sooner, they are less likely to be walking on the deck, swimming in the pool, eating in the restaurants and, thus, less likely to spread the virus.”          MarketWatch, 3/7/20, Quentin Fottrell

I rest my case for normally not watching or reading the ‘news.’

Go forth and have a good week while exercising common sense precautions against catching anything including this virus and be grateful I didn’t even mention the difference between being prepared and the hoarding of supplies. 🙂

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Thursday Doors

I grab a chuckle wherever I can. So, forgive my potty humor, but I couldn’t resist.

In this case, Elvis did literally leave the building. 🙂 Happy Thursday.

As always, this post is linked to the Door King, Norm Frampton’s
Thursday Doors – March 5, 2020
.

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Act of Kindness

I feel like a rant this morning about the so called news, but instead of adding to the noise in your life, I’ll show you some sights from my past week that made me smile.

For your chuckle of the morning, I want to tell you about a burger and fries meal we were enjoying at River City when a monster of a meal came out of the kitchen. The couple grabbed their phones to take photos, so I asked if they minded if I took one. They laughed and invited me over. Never have I seen a burger like that. Could you eat that?

As we all head out to another pot-hole news filled week, remember one thing – if you’re looking for factual information about current events, dig for them yourself. The news shows are all about entertainment, ratings, and earnings.

Go forth, be safe, be happy, and by all means fact check. 🙂

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