Saturday, April 28, 2007

Changes of Seasons and Things to Do

Gardening - It's time to be thinking about what I'll be doing with the summer vegetables and how to work around those early spring vegetables still blooming and producing food. There is no question that I have enough gardening space set up. Now, I have to make a decision about where I want to put what -- and, that is not my strongest point.

My self-watering planters are happily waiting for the transplants and, because all of a sudden we have had some unseasonably cool weather decide to show its face, I'm going to wait until after I have finished filming before sending them out.

Bowling - It's getting down to the wire for the winter league bowling and I find that I'm an interesting position, this year. On both teams, we have managed to finish sixth. It's all in how you look at it. The first league has 26 teams and so sixth place is very good. The second league has six teams and maintaining sixth place took considerable effort. (See? That's how you make lemonade out of lemons!) These are both daytime leaks and don't have anywhere near the stress that you can find on nighttime leagues, when the almost professional bowlers come out to play.

The best thing about bowling in the daytime has been discovering that I can still do most of the things I want to do in the evening without having to worry about finding substitutes. The best thing about bowling, for me, is that you can do it at any age and it just makes the feel good. Our oldest bowler just celebrated her 86th birthday. I can only hope that I'll still be doing my share of bowling at that age.

Clutter -I'm still trying to sort out craft supplies from pottery supplies from woodshop supplies, and it looks as though it may take the better part of the summer for me to finish. Even though I've made a big dent in getting rid of the trash, I'm still involved in a lot of back-and-forth between the two buildings, trying to find a final home for everything.

My favorite thing is actually getting rid of a lot of the stuff that I have been wanting to get rid of for, lo, these many years. With an incinerator close by, there's little chance of having to take back the decision, once I've dropped it into the flames. This is good.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Broccoli In; Brussel Sprouts Out!

The gardens have been really great, this year. Unfortunately, we've been having some very unseasonably hot days and this has really been stressing my broccoli. Out of eight very big plants, only one has really shaped up to looking like when you might buy at the grocery store.

Although the rest of the plants are very healthy, they would never be chosen for anyone's photo shoot. I have been in a constant battle against Mother Nature, deflowering my broccoli by pinching off the center heads, thereby causing any number of side shoots. Since the entire plant is edible, this has not bothered me, albeit, it's the last place I bring people to view the garden.

It really is a happy little garden, even though the broccoli, spinach, and lettuce keep trying to complete their lifecycle. We have been having absolutely delicious fresh garden salads almost every night, which is all that one can ask for. The garden peas have finally began to develop their stronger stalks and spread out their feelers though the nearest trellis string. Some have even chosen to use nearby onion stems. It doesn't matter. Everyone's happy.

Although I'm delighted with the growth of the brussels sprouts, I will be planted them in the same garden bed, next year. They offer a lot of shade to the lettuce and spinach but take up way too much room that I would rather give to more prolific plants. Gardening, like bowling, is nothing more than a series of adjustments.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Tax Time Means Take a Break

It's been a hectic time and I've been spending most of the previous few weeks gathering together all of my tax information. I discovered the joy of filing my taxes online a few years ago and have been trying to get friends and family to do the same. But, they're a hard sell.

The biggest glitch, this year, because the 15th is on a weekend and, although the deadline has been extended to Monday night for the federal return, my state actually gives us until midnight on Tuesday. In either case, my only problem is seeing to it that my taxes are filed on time and then let my online tax service to forward them. Within seconds, I should get my confirmation numbers for both federal and state taxes, and then go back to the business of gardening and getting myself ready for Leatherheads and George Clooney.

If I had a brain in my head, I would have filed shortly after being sent my reminder to file my taxes by my service back in January. Of course, like so many, I'm right under the wire.

For those of you who plan to use an extension of time, this would be a good time to get it already and surprise both federal and state governments with an early filing of your extension. Happy taxes.