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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Catch Up

Yeah, one post every six weeks is not way to develop a following, is it? I can blame my lack of attention on the fact that I have a new grand-baby (and first granddaughter), who was in NICU for a week, or on the fact that it's been spring and the garden needed to be put in and the bike needed to be ridden. All would be accurate and legitimate excuses...but in the end would still just be excuses. The real reason that I haven't been posting is because, well, I'm Catherine. Will have to work on an improved version...and we all know that improvements take time and patience, don't we?

So, yes...I have a beautiful grand-daughter named Scarlett Ava. She got a bit of a rough start, being born with an infection that kept her on IV antibiotics for a week, in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. I am fortunate to live only four blocks from the hospital where Scarlett was born. To say the least, Rachel wasn't able to sleep much there, so as soon as I got done with work I would run up there and Rachel would come to my house to nap for a few hours. I was privileged to have many, many hours cooing in Scarlett's ears during her precious first days. The result is that Scarlett has known my voice since and responds to me like, well, like a Nana who's as close as one can get to second-mama. You can only imagine how elated I am with that! Rachel lives an hour away, so I can nuzzle Scarlett as often as I can afford the gas for driving back-and-forth...which is, of course, not often enough.

With all the focus on Scarlett and a lot of rain, I got a very late start at both my bicycling and gardening, and I've been working hard for the past couple of weeks to catch-up.

Back in April, I got diligent about getting in shape. I realized that I was putting food in my mouth basically from the time I got up in the morning until the time I went to bed at night...which occurs both very early and quite late. I wasn't eating only crap, although there was plenty of that, but I was waaay over-eating. I dropped 15 lbs just by knocking out the constant nibbling. Three weeks ago I got on my bike for the first time this year, and hit the pavement with a vengeance. I took 4 days off last week, instead of 2, to get the garden done. My riding schedule is 21 miles Saturday through Wednesday (5 on; two off). The work is paying off and I'm getting strong fast. I rode Saturday this week, but worked on the garden all day Sunday. I had a child arrive in-crisis late that afternoon for a couple days' stay, and didn't ride Sunday or Monday. That's life, and people have to come first. Diligence from now on.

My garden is looking stupendous. It's about 40'x8'. I put in 30 tomato plants and 18 bell pepper plants (of different colors - chocolate, purple, mandarin, etc.). I had the seeds and am (obviously) late planting them, but went ahead with a couple of rows each of peas and beans. We'll see how much of a crop I get from those. I'll be happy to even have enough to nibble on for a few weeks. I still have a few pumpkin, broccoli, and acorn squash plants to put in, which means digging out more sod and more tilling. Will one more day's wait in planting them make a great difference in their produce? I'm hoping not, because I'm going riding and mowing tonight instead of gardening.