Monday, June 8, 2009


Last Sunday DH & I were alone as our daughters attended a church sponsored youth event at the Islamic Center in Rochester. So after having coffee & dessert in the fellowship hall (OMG do Presbyterian love to eat) we went browsing at a flea market in search of weather tight salt & pepper shakers for the patio/outdoor kitchen. Then we hit a yard sale on the way home where we were introduced to an alternative (read foolish) way of thinking.
There was a couple out on their front lawn having a hugely discounted sale . Items like televisions, a stereo, & two rifles which got DH's attention. Long story short the guy was talking about how he wasn't gonna part with the rifles in light of our country's past economic climate (raise eyebrow/rub chin/ponder thoughtfully, did I miss the newsflash?) but then reconsidered since things had picked up in the last 3 months. Then he muttered a punchline about not needing to protect his can goods which only he thought was very funny.
I asked him if he had ever been laid off.
No, he was in public service.
I kid you not those were the words that he used.
I glanced over at DH who was at the same time glancing back at me. Not really sure what I answered back to this. I mean this guy really gave me pause. I was busy thinking to myself of all the occupations that aren't prone to cutbacks. Brain surgeon most nursing positions. Still it happens except maybe to this guy (per him).
Then I remembered when I was 19 & got laid off. How it took me 5 weeks of job hunting before I finally got a job in one of the lowest paying nursing homes in Rochester. Then another 6 weeks of living on various friend's couch/living room floors with my DD#1 who was 18 mos. old until I could scrap together rent & deposit for a studio apartment.
So besides sparking a trip down memory lane this guy's remark got me to thinking about how hard it is to recover from a period of unemployment. Back in '82 I would have to say that it took me about six or eight mos. to recover. Back then I didn't own a car just a bus pass. Rent was $200 in the Maplewood section. My sitter cost me $30 & an apartment cleaning every week.
Now? I shutter to think about it. Yet doesn't this fear guides my thinking in everything I do?

Count the tomato stakes.
One. Two. Three. Four ... twelve total. Ya, I know don't plant your seedlings that close (6")together. Well if i was gonna follow that rule then I'd also have t follow the rule about having @ least 6 hours of direct sunlight which is physically impossible due to a neighbors 100 y.o. Maple tree shading my backyard. So I settle for 3 hours & an almost 3' deep raised bed that has been layered with bunny poop, green matter, ground egg shells, wood ash, & top soil.
San Marzano seedlings were planted deep with only the top 2" showing on 6/1.
It's now the 8th & there almost 6 inches tall & very healthy.
If I had to rebuilt my raised beds again I would make them all 3 feet tall. Easy to weed.

I have extremely (unrealistically) high hopes for this bed. We built this bed last Summer along with a cold frame to the left and layered both in the same manner as the other one. This bed has had a full Autumn & Winter to breakdown into compost with the help of like a million worms. So far the 4 San Marzano tomato seedlings have grown 5", the 6 Brussels Sprouts (center) have shot up 4" & doubled in size, and the 12 celery seedlings (foreground) has also doubled in size to 8" tall. Other than sprinkling a pinch of phosphorus in each planting whole all I have done water (rain) on an almost daily basis. I need to plant in more marigolds before the bugs arrive.

If I selectively harvest the celery stalk by stalk will it continue to grow thereby giving me twice the harvest? Need to grow enough to dehydrate for Winter soup & provide for Summer eating.

~~ pelenaka ~~