Wednesday, December 29, 2010

After Christmas

We had an extremely quiet Christmas, but managed just fine. Nice to have friends to visit. Didn't hear much from our family, but know that everyone is very busy. We're still in the midst of a cold spell that has been going on for over a month. As I've said before, it sounds wimpy to complain when the temp gets down to 40 here, but that's really cold in the tropics. Last night we had two extra blankets on the bed and closed the shutters. We layer. Two sweatshirts in the morning and then shed them down to a t-shirt in the afternoon. It hasn't rained during this same period, which is a little bit of a concern. This is usually a really rainy time. Hope it rains soon to fill the rotoplas' that I use for laundry. The big cistern is still nearly full, so no real worries. We're extremely conservative in our water and electricity use. Since we had never lived off grid before, we weren't sure how to judge our usage. At this rate we could have put in a regular toilet instead of the composting one. Would have been cheaper and more comfortable. It's all a learning experience.

We are struggling to keep machinery working. One of the good things about the cold, dry spell is that things aren't growing very fast. We have a big weedeater in for repair (has been there for 5 months) and our regular one bit the dust today. It started life as a Truper (made in Mexico) and later the engine was replace with a Homelite. I guess you can only squeeze so much life out of them when they just give up. Bearings jammed and it welded itself into a non-usable lump. With tears and a nearly empty bank account, we had to buy a new one. Found a "deal" on a mid priced one, bro't it home and the darned thing won't start. Art went back to the store and THEY WERE CLOSED! THEY CLOSE ON WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON. It's all right. This is Belize. Get a grip, Gale. Tomorrow is another day.

I did paint a couple of watercolors the last couple of weeks. Nothing great, but nice to get back into something creative besides weeds. I keep thinking I'll break loose and create something bright and splashy, but always end up with realistic something.

I've been hesitant to say that I planted another garden. Moved it down the hill where the marl isn't so close to the surface. Most things are doing ok, but the cold is taking a toll. I'm dragging hoses down there and watering from the gray water tank. That's our shower and dishwater water. Like I said, we're very conservative. I don't sprinkle, but put water only on the ground, not on the plants themselves. I planted carrots and yellow onions and nothing came up. Two weeks ago I planted more of the same seed and they're doing great. This time during the full moon. If I actually get something from this garden I'll post photos and, of course, will have to brag. Isn't it weird to plant a garden in December. My Oregon brain has a little trouble with some of this. Of course, where were lived in the mountains, we couldn't have a garden at all, so this is really a treat.

Ok, I've babbled enough for now. I'm going to dig out some photos I took of interesting fungus that were out before this cold spell hit. More soon. Gale


Wilma said...

Glad you had a nice Christmas. We went to visit my mom in northeast Georgia and that area got its first white Christmas since 1831! My mother was thrilled to see it; of course we had just come from 3feet of snow in Minnesota. :-) But it was very pretty. Hope you warm up soon. Forty degrees is cold when the inside temp is the same as the outside temp!


Emily said...

You should post photos of your watercolors. Would love to see. Hope you get some rain soon! We had snow in NC the day after Christmas and are still waiting for it to melt away completely. May the new year bring you rain, a lush garden, good health, and much happiness!

Bill and Debra said...

Yes Gale, we would definitely like to see pictures of your watercolors. I hope to have time to paint again one day. We had a house full of family for Christmas and plan on a quiet New Years though.

Hope your garden keeps doing well.

Happy New Years. debra