Thursday, April 19, 2012

"You killed the dog."

I've said several times before that I'm not much of a runner. I do enjoy exercising, but usually I'd prefer other exercises. However, lately I've really been enjoying running. For whatever strange reason, it's starting to become one of my default workouts. (At least, while it's warm out. I don't think I'll ever go for a run when it's -15 or colder.) So the dog and I ran for about 45 minutes last night. She still doesn't totally have her summer paws yet, and the scrape she got last week opened up again. However, she loved every moment of that run. And she behaved so well! When we got home, she got so much praise and so much attention, plus a few treats. After she'd drunk half her bowl full of water, she laid down next to Shane and fell deeply asleep. So deeply that when he called her name, she didn't even twitch her ears. I ended up having to carry her back to the bedroom for the night, awake but completely limp in my arms. When I put her on the bed, we spoke to her and petted her for a few minutes and she wagged her tail at us. A completely contented dog.
If you're afraid that I've been "working" her too hard, don't be. She loved every second of the run. When we had to wait at the first streetlight, she bounced and barked at cars in a "Look at me! I get to run!!" kind of way. Even at the second (and last) streetlight, near the end of our run, she was panting and wagging her tail. As soon as we could cross, she jumped ahead and practically pulled me across the street. I am acutely aware that our little lady will be 9 this summer, and that the average age of death for her breed is 10 1/2. We run together as much for her health as for mine. My very good friend came over briefly last night and remarked on how trim and healthy the dog is looking. Since this friend is also the daughter of our vet, that's a wonderful compliment.
With the roads and sidewalks now clear of snow and ice, it's also biking season!! Shane did the grocery shopping the other day, but when he went to HG Market, they were pretty much out of everything. He said it looked like they were doing some spring cleaning. But we needed chicken for our dinner last night, so I decided to bike there and see if they had more. I wasn't hopeful, so I only brought one small reusable container. Darn! They had lots of lovely things. I ended up getting an absolutely enormous whole chicken breast, two rather small pork chops, half a pound of bacon, and two heads of broccoli. I'm so excited that they're getting more and more veggies. If we'd had any meals coming up that involved red peppers, I totally would have bought some from them.
I'm looking forward to a long summer of biking, rather than driving. In fact, tonight I'm probably going to bike to the store to get some more bags of soil. I know, I know! Plastic bags of dirt! It's ridiculous! But I don't really have any other good way to get soil. My compost isn't done yet, and in any case I have nothing with which to turn it and get to what might be good compost at the bottom. So bags of soil it is. I need more to start my seeds in, and it actually turns out that I need more yogurt containers to start them in too! I didn't realize how many I'd brought in to work (besides my veggie plants, I've got my begonia and several spider plants in yogurt containers) and I didn't have nearly as many as I wanted for starting plants at home. I'll have to look around and see what else I have to start plants in.
I also haven't made my planned trip to the transfer station yet. I'm getting an idea about what kinds of things I'd like to find to help my plants. I'd like to avoid buying too many cages for tomatoes, peas, and beans if I can. So I'll see what I can find.
I did plant in my large totes last night, though. Two of them have two tomatoes and rows of carrots. The other two have two each of peas and squashes. It was more plants than I originally meant to put in the squash buckets, but I think it should do all right. I tried to get one summer squash and one winter squash in each.
Trying to figure out where to put and plant some of my other seeds is interesting. Can I start my parsnips outdoors yet? What about broccoli, do I really need to start that indoors? And my cabbages? I'll need to check on those. The seed company threw in some small "Parisienne" carrots with my order, for free. Since they're small, I can utilize some long, low buckets that I have as their planters. I just need to get the dirt for them, first.
I'm also on a mission to find some organic fertilizer if possible in this town. If anyone knows where to find it, please tell me! On my (admittedly, very few) trips to greenhouses and even the major home stores, I've never been able to find organic fertilizer. I think it's going to be a must for keeping my garden healthy and productive this summer. I'm using companion planting wherever I can, but I'd like to have a backup in case that's not enough.

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