Thursday, August 16, 2012

End of summer

The light has changed. It's actually getting dark at night now, during hours when I'm awake. The leaves have started changing. (See the yellow?)
While the days are still hot (in the 70s and even low 80s) the nights are chilly. All the growing things are winding down while we people are frantically scrambling to get the last of all that is good about summer. Ice cream, bike rides, berries, garden produce....
My evenings have been busier than ever as I scramble to do the same. With our trip next week, and with Shane being gone until right before we leave, I have extra things to do. It's not just my "one thing per day" anymore, it's "how many things can I get done each night". My to-do lists are long. Last night, I didn't sit down until after 10:00. The fact that I was so productive made it all worth it. I grocery shopped, I made dinner and lunch for myself, I took the dog for a run, I watered and fertilized the garden boxes (although holding off on watering the actual garden paid off--it rained last night!), I bottled the hard cider Shane made (by myself, which probably doesn't seem all that impressive unless you've actually bottled homebrew yourself--lots of running around), I did the dishes, I blanched and froze a pound of farmer's market green beans, I cleaned the cat box.... I tried calling my brother while doing all of this, too, since I've been so busy that I've neglected my family a bit. (This time, he was too busy to talk!) My list for this evening is just as long. I'm running myself ragged and the only thought that keeps me going is how much fun I'm going to have next week. And how relaxing it will be.
But it's not all hard work. With summer ending I'm really taking the time to notice the beauty all around me. Like this edible landscaping at the University:
It's a wonderful example of how food plants can be remarkably pretty. In that picture are: corn, squash, sunflowers, and nasturtiums. Probably even a few other things I didn't notice or know. Incorporated with the flowers, it's a beautiful planter box. Behind it are picnic tables where many people eat their lunches. It's a relaxing spot and I'll miss it after the snow flies.
All of these are good things. I ate one of my homegrown carrots last night and it was delicious! I have yummy cherry tomatoes ripening like crazy. I finally have a large zucchini growing (which I need to find time to pick and shred and freeze....). And I've found a few minutes to daydream about the Christmas presents I want to start. I have a few small things in mind, and on my list is a trip to the craft store so that I can buy the materials. I can make some of them on our trip. In fact, a couple of them I need to do away from the house, or I'll get my cat over-excited. Whenever I pull out yarn now, he expects me to make a catnip toy! :)

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