House & Home

A still-waiting-to-finish-moving update

Pictured above, a mid-summer New Brunswick sunset. It really is very pretty where we’re going.

There’s not really a whole lot to update, since Rob and I are currently waiting out our close date in our mostly-empty house in Toronto. With the majority of our stuff already moved and in storage, it’s a bit of a drag, but we’re making do.


Trajectory: Book 2

Rob’s putting the final touches on his anxiously-awaited second novel (the follow-up to Trajectory Book 1) which he expects to make available for pre-order very soon, with full publication to follow soon after. Full disclosure: I’ve read it, and it’s great. Read his blog post and then go grab Book 1 to get ahead of the game!

Art & Photography

As for me, I’m in a bit of an artistic limbo. All of my art/craft stuff has been moved into storage, where it will live until Rob and I find and buy a place out East. This includes my giant photo printer (boo), so I’ve had to temporarily take all my photography work out of my Etsy shop. I do still have photography available in my Redbubble Shop, but it’s a significantly smaller part of the collection right now.

I am still selling my block prints and chess sets on Etsy, however, and orders for those keep coming in, which is lovely. And I’ve been adding more products to my Canadian Postage Stamps collection on Redbubble. The stamps look crazy great on the totebags and t-shirts, and I love how the framed prints ended up. Fun.

Either way, it really (really) means the world to me when someone likes my work enough to pay me for it and to support me as an artist. Some day I will figure out how to properly thank everyone who has bought some of my art. There may be future surprises in store!


Gardening research

In the meantime, while in mid-move-limbo, I’ve been doing a buttload of research for a personal vegetable & herb gardening calendar. My goal is to cobble together a general week-by-week schedule & plan for 2017 that covers seed starting, transplanting, and harvesting so we have some idea of how to approach our first year with extensive* vegetable and herb gardens.

There are a bunch of planting calendars out there, but I haven’t found one that covers everything I am interested in growing, and information about all the various vegetables is scattered all over the place. More than once I’ve had the urge to start a public wiki and start compiling it all in one place.

As an example, most calendars have “beans” as a general catch-all, but there are lots of different kinds of beans (pole, bush, snap, dry, fava, lima, edamame, etc.) and seed starting and transplanting recommendations vary between them. Also, many of the information sources I have found don’t have all the details I want, and then the information that does exist isn’t always consistent. It’s a little frustrating.

As an aside

If you know of an excellent, detailed public wiki about vegetable and herb gardening, or if you know of really solid sources for this sort of information, please (please!) send me a note on Twitter or Facebook. It will be hugely appreciated.

A few years from now I’m sure I’ll laugh about all of this because I expect most successful gardening is the result of hard-won experience & wisdom rather than all this rote book-learnin’. But, well, this is where I am right now. And it’s fun, really, I just can’t wait to get started.



Other stuff

In addition to all of that, I’m continuing to read as much as I can about other stuff related to our overall plans, such as

  • Food storage, including freezing, canning, and root cellaring (pickle all of the things!)
  • Compost, soil testing, and soil amendments since we will not be using chemical/synthetic fertilizers in any way
  • Pest & disease identification and remediation, again ideally using organic methods as much as possible (can’t promise I’ll sacrifice an entire tomato harvest to blight, however, so we may not be 100% organic on this part)
  • Pollinator garden design, since we want to attract as many beneficial pollinators and insects as possible, including bees, butterflies and hummingbirds
  • Designing and building chicken coops & chicken tractors — we will probably leave chickens to year 2, but I want to have some idea of what to expect in terms of cost and complexity

Et cetera, et cetera, yadda yadda. It suffices to say that I’m managing to fill the time, I just wish it were less sitting-around-reading and more feet-on-the-ground looking for a place to buy so we can just get started already.

But, that will all come soon enough, I’m sure. More updates as events warrant!

* meaning “more extensive than zero gardens”, which is what we’ve had in Toronto

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