Ho Hum, and What to do?

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

I'm going a little out of my mind right now. The weather was so nice, I was getting used to being outside playing here and there killing time until I could start putting plants in the ground. I have all my seedlings (that I can support at one time) started under lamps in the laundry room. But I'm just in this gloomy funk. Is anyone else there? Stuck between wanting to be someplace and not getting to leave yet. I really am just feeling blah today.

So I'm doing chores, around the house, with homeschool stuff, and in my DG files. I changed my profile info, cleaned up and updated my Diary's and my Journal's.

Anyone else here with me?

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

Oh, I thought I would share my new bio with you all. It's sort of longish.

"We had several homes in the Pacific Northwest as I was growing up and what I remember most distinctly about them all is the large trees (or forests), blankets of Ivyís, the most beautiful Lilacs, Rhododendrons and Azaleas. Around all of that were countless varieties of the most beautiful flowers in all colors. I know as children we were often in the garden with my mother getting our little fingers dirty. As an adult, there is very little I could tell you about how to grow flowers and plant seeds despite my love of my mothers beautiful gardens as a child. Somehow along the way the ďhowĒ was either not imparted or forgotten.

As an adult, once I had my own residence, I often longed and attempted to recreate that type of beauty. First around my apartment balconies in pots, which I was never able to keep alive for more than a few weeks. Then in my first town home in the small plot of soil around our patio. I had mixed success, but we didnít live there long enough to really see any of the plants mature. And finally in my own home, with itís own yard but sadly covered completely in grass and rock. I wisely chose to find a small area in the front of the house to embrace and make my own. That was five years ago, and I still fight with that first little bed, never really liking it.

This spring I have finally managed, after five years, to reduce the rock on my property to a few small decorative beds mostly around shrubs and Daylilyís or in areas needed for property drainage. Iíve finished putting in patios, arbors, walls, walks, raised beds, trees, shrubs and a play structure for my three boys. Most of this Iíve done with my own hands (and my poor husbands), through pregnancies and nursing, and all of which Iíve designed on my own. Finally this year I get to really see if all this hard work and waiting will pay off. Although through the process Iíve had the pleasure of putting in a few annuals and perennials, this will really be the first year that I can really start to make my ďsecret gardenĒ become a reality and hopefully start enjoying the fruits of my labor.

In closing I would just like to say thank you and give a very big hug to all the Daveís Garden members who donít even know how much theyíve helped inspire and educate me over the past two years before I set out on this last portion of my journey. I thank my dear mother for her inspiration, if not her knowledge, of gardening as a child and my husband for his support and encouragement. I have every confidence now, after the hours Iíve spent reading and researching here, that while I may still make some bad decisions, I believe my garden is going to be a place I will love and grow with. I hope that someday in the near future it will rival even the beautiful gardens that I remember from my homes growing up as a child. Oh, and I have been very carefully involving my boys in every seed, seedling, flower and bug as I go. : ) "

Reno, NV

Nice bio. I'm with you in the funk. For me it's more of a 'it's still flippen cold, I want to be outside, and if I can't have that I'd still rather not be a work' kind of funk. I'm very grumbly about work lately.

Hope it warms up for you soon.

Dolores, CO(Zone 5b)

Yep, funkiness has settled in here as well.

Gastonia, NC(Zone 7b)

Oh, yeah.

and, nice bio. ;-)

Dolores, CO(Zone 5b)

Yes, forgot to say that, very nice bio!

Santa Fe, NM

Nice bio. You are not alone! I wonder what plants influenced us from our childhood? kTalia, you mentioned lilacs and azaleas. For me it was red hibiscus and mixed colored lantana. Do you remember smells, too? Orange blossoms and desert rain for me! It is a nice thought on this bitter, windy night.

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

Smells...

When I was living in Oregon, mostly what I would describe today as wet peat moss. Earthy dampness mostly. The only flower smells I remember were the lilacs. Ohhh... and I remember working every summer in the berry fields. They smelled wonderful, but that wasn't the best part, definitely eating the Shasta Strawberries all day was all the pay I needed.

When I lived in California with my father, I remember the Jasmine and the wet dusty smell of the earth when it would start to rain. I didn't mention that my father also did some gardening, only he preferred fruit bearing treas and vegetables. I remember the white piqued (is that right?) fence around the vegetable garden that kept who knows what out. Maybe it kept the grass out. I know it didn't keep the kids, tomato worms and weeds out!

Thanks for that thought roybird... I think that might have fixed a little bit of the funk.

Reno, NV

Warm manzanita wood. Icy cold fresh pine trees. Sunshine on dry grass. And the increadable smell of rain falling in the summer time. Sun drenched manzanita is still one of those quintisental summer smells for me.

When I stayed with my grandma it was the smell of roses right outside the bedroom window.

Thanks that is a nice bright spot.

Santa Fe, NM

You are welcome! It made me feel better, too.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Wow, I have lived with all those smells, having lived similar places. Lovely.

I would add the smell of wintergreen berries in the birch woods in Michigan.

Santa Fe, NM

Ahh. That one I don't know.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

I neglected to say I really liked the bio as I got caught up in the smells.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

Yes, I loved the bio and all the smells as well. I did learn to garden from my mother and my father, but nothing I learned worked when I had my first garden in New Mexico. The way we grew geraniums in New Orleans was to take cuttings and put them in the ground when the weather warmed, then water them regularly. Nothing else and they grew. Needless to say everything I planted that way in New Mexico dried up and blew away. Then I hit the books to learn how to garden in this tougher than usual climate.
My childhood garden memories were of huge live oaks shading everything and azaleas blooming en mass in the Spring and Camellias in the winter. And acorns and hickory nuts falling on the roof sounding like artillery at times. And sweet olive with flowers so tiny that you don't notice them, but a knockout fragrance that leads you to them. We also had gardenias that smelled like heaven and magnolias the same. I miss that lush semi-tropical environment -- but here I enjoy the weather much more.
I get very down in winter and Dave's Garden has helped with that. Also an occasional vacation to LA or farther for a few days.
And of course, I still visit the farm in Mississippi whenever I can. But summers there are brutal. Not so hot but extremely humid. But oddly, you get used to it -- unlike me and winter.

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

"And acorns and hickory nuts falling on the roof sounding like artillery at times. "

Wow, trying to imagine sleeping through that! I think I would actually like to hear that some time. Although, I can't imagine it sounding as wonderful as the pouring rain on the roof while your sleeping. Does anyone else find that one of the most calming sounds?

Thanks everyone for liking my bio. It was fun to write.

Gastonia, NC(Zone 7b)

When you're a kid you can sleep through a lot of things. I grew up going to our family's fish camp each summer, where the kids all slept in the big unfinished attic under a tin roof upon which hickory nuts fell all night long, branches scraped, the moon shown through the windows, the smell of slightly musty family history and the fishy scent of the estuary shore......

I'd never be able to sleep there now. ;-)

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

I have never had trouble sleeping through falling nuts and acorns. They aren't quite as comforting as rain on the roof, but they are lovely. As for rain on the roof, I love it, but even better I like to hear rain falling on flagstone in the garden. Sigh.

Calgary, AB(Zone 3a)

Wonderful bio kTalia. I can sleep through an atomic bomb but I luv the rain drumming on the woodshed roof and when the wind makes the trees talk while I'm lying in bed. The smell of rain washed cedars, and fermenting fruit are strong strong memories for me. Sweet peas and fresh ground coffee is my current fav morning smelly combo. Evening scented stocks and merlot is my current fav evening smelly combo.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

I feel that way too sometimes. A particular flavor of Spring Fever - having planned and waiting for the growing season and it isn't here yet. I've found other things to do, but have also found some time to rest as Winter is a time to rest and be at peace. I know after the a Summer full of activity I'll be glad for it again. The seasons have a cycle and are not rushed because my agenda would have them run faster. I remind myself to be patient and work with the seasons. The reality is that life is too short and not too long, so I focus to enjoy this moment for what it is.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Very good, Dparsons. I have just been painting like a maniac myself...

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

Very true wise words. Backwards for me, but true none the less. The weird weather just got my internal clock all messed up I guess.

Reno, NV

Rain on the roof is one of my faviorte things. Well, honestly rain anywhere. Falling into the lake and making the surface dance, sifting thru trees, bouncing off pavement. Rain is ok by me.
very true Dparsons. But so hard to live by.

Santa Fe, NM

Very Taoist of you, Dparsons! The weather was so nasty I stayed in, looked at the paintings (more like painted sketches) that I'd done in Death Valley. I didn't hate them as much as I thought. Then I grabbed one of the photos we had printed and started a whole slew of new little paintings. Nothing particularly wonderful but loosened up and had fun. I hadn't had a good studio day in a million years because of my photography obsession. And today was just too disgusting to contemplate. Even my tulips look frozen. To heck with this! Might as well paint. It is my default mode. By the way, what does rain sound like? We never have any. Only snow. And wind.

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

It is hard to live by. Seems all the truths of this sort are harder to choose. I just try to remember that it is harder on me when I choose not to.

Gastonia, NC(Zone 7b)

What I find is that in the depths of winter when I really do in fact want to hunker down, rest, doze, drift, hibernate to the extent my biology will permit, instead, there are things that keep HAPPENING that I end up having responsibilities to respond to. durnitall. frumpgrump. leeme alone plzzzzzzzzzz..

lol

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

I have been more thoroughly in hermit mode this winter than in many years. It has been good. I have made an exception for this forum, but not much else.

Los Alamos, NM(Zone 5a)

I wish I could say that I had come to terms with winter. I have not. I know that dparsons' way is the right way but my guts ( head) don't buy it? I sleep better in the winter because of the darkness, but I don't sleep that many more hours than in summer.
My problem is my own basic neurosis. I am stuck indoors. I don't object so much to being indoors as I object to being in charge of the house. I don't want to be and I never agreed to be. It is a marital problem with my DH whom I adore in every other way. Enough said. We do have a cleaning lady, a good one, but she can't keep up. I detest being in charge of housekeeping. I know this is more a problem of people my age than of younger people. But I worked until I retired and make no financial demands on my DH. The least he could do is help keep the house up. But he really doesn't care what it looks like and I do. Sigh.
The only way I can solve this problem is to accept that this is the way it is or get a divorce, which I don't want. So winter is my bad time, made worse by the fact that lack of light bothers me as well. Summers -- I go outside and forget the interior or the house.

Dolores, CO(Zone 5b)

Oh, Pajarito... I understand your conundrum, and I have no solid answer, but negotiation is our friend... a bit of give and take... anyway, I need warm weather too!!!!!!!!!

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

I feel for you pajarito. When two people see something very differently that they both have to live with, it can be difficult.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Well, here is a really drastic solution I finally tried a few years back. Had the same kind of problem with my DH. I had enough of it and simply spent a year remodeling the garden layout in both lots and during the winter I did a lot in the hoop house or on the computer or at the gallery painting.

I did absolutely nothing except wash my clothes in the house for that year. Eventually it got so bad even my DH could not stand it and he asked for a compromise. He will never be a professional house cleaner but we now have a reasonably workable approach and he does indeed contribute.

But it was not easy getting through that year!

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

DH's certainly need to contribute an equal share to the necessary work in maintaining a life.

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Right. I was fortunate to find a method that did not require constant fighting or a divorce to solve my difficulty. I love the guy dearly, but he, unfortunately, is no more perfect than I am, ha!

Santa Fe, NM

D.H. and I are both messy pack rats and live in near squalor at all times! That's my opinion. He just doesn't see it. However, because he makes so much more money than I do when he is working and isn't stingy or mean about it, I don't mind doing more of the house work then. It balances out. I do get annoyed that he cooks with the kitchen drawers open and doesn't wipe counters. He is a better cook than I am, though. I do all the laundry because I can't stand the way he does it. He likes to vacuum because he recently bought a new vacuum and thinks it is a toy. Don't tell him it isn't.

Carson City, NV(Zone 6b)

With my DH stuck on the sofa while his leg heals, I have realized just how much work he does around the house. He is still helping where he can but since he can't stand up for very long or lift things, there's a lot of extra things for me to do around the house now. I'm so glad we bought the new dishwasher this winter because he manages to generate an amazing quantity of dishes each day. Does he really need a fresh glass each time he wants a drink of water?

Albuquerque, NM(Zone 7b)

I came firmly to the conclusion not to sweat the little stuff. Probably easier for a man, but non-the-less realistic. If somebody is uptight about how you squeeze the toothpaste tube then you are likely at odds over a million unimportant little details. Having a harmonius relationship is more important than the status of the toothpaste tube. If you can't stand it get your own tube and put your name on it. On the other side, if one partner carries significantly less than half the workload then that creates disharmony and is an issue to address. Just because the DW is more easily disgusted and will do the housework is not a justification for abdicating all of it. I wouldn't even take earnings as a justification (unless the earnings were associated with more time investment). Its a workload balance. A last point is cleanliness obsessions. I've heard of people who dust and vacuum and mop more than once a day. I would not get dragged into that kind of unhealthy compulsion and call it a division of labor.

Santa Fe, NM

I have never heard of anyone who dusts, vacuums and mops even once a day! Unless they are doing it as a business. Right now my D.H. is super busy finishing up his contract work for the state and editing a video documentary for school. So, I do have more time...except on Thursdays and Saturdays, when I have classes. We had neighbors once who did Nothing but work on their house. This went on for several years! They finally got divorced and sold the place. Didn't surprise us at all. Every so often I will embark on a "project" like sanding and painting all the kitchen cabinets last summer, which I mostly did by myself. But, not very often.

Littleton, CO(Zone 5a)

I haven't been responding... Mostly because I don't really know how to comment. My husband does a lot around the house... now the yard, that's a different story. He's crazy about communication, he ALWAYS wants to talk about what's working, what's not working. Honestly, I'm very un-female in that respect. I hate talking about feelings and relationship stuff, but I do it because I'm aware that I'm fortunate that he wants to and I realize it does seem to help keep us on the same page.

Gastonia, NC(Zone 7b)

I am once again reminded of a reason I am glad I live alone. I can be just as much of a slob as I wish to be and get as disgusted with my own slovenly behavior as I wish to and get as obsessive and picky about bizarre aspects of home maintenance as pleases me........... I imagine I would be a very high-maintenance living companion simply because I have lived alone so long and learned to like it very well. ;-)

Plus which, I can have temper tantrums if I need to and no one gets upset. I had an extremely productive tantrum this morning out of maximum frustration that I had failed to this point to accumulate the simple elements necessary to set up a compost.

Then I went out into, not "our" back trash area, but the neighboring one (there was big fire here a few years ago so junk piles remain out in the brush) and located a length of fencing which with borrowed wire cutters I was able to wrestle into a nice cylinder and anchor it with staples, for my compost.

I am very proud of it. It is perfect. I had to get mad enough to be willing to ransack the neighboring junk and wrestle with the stuff first, because it was wadded up and half buried and had to be cut away from the twisted part, and then a section of it had to be patched by cutting another chunk out of what was back there and bending the wire ends around the edges of the main piece, whew! -- but nowhere around here is fencing sold by the foot, you have to buy 50 feet at once. I only need about 11'6". Criminey.

I also found some very nice travertine rock and lugged one back up here for my garden. More will follow it. But I am so very relieved to have my compost set up. Finally!!!!!

Santa Fe, NM

Hey, Kyla! Compost is a wonderful thing but it needn't be complex. It does need manure and green stuff and soil but that's about it. Good that you did not have to buy 50 feet of fence. And you re-used what was thrown out. That seems like an excellent day's work!

Ennis, MT(Zone 4a)

Temper tantrums can be productive. I once started an exclusive high end stuffed toy design business with a doosie of a tantrum. Fortunately I seem to have found gentler ways to access my creative drive these days, at least for the most part.

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