Wet Weather Woes & Wonders

The storm that came through this week kept me from going to work for two days. That’s the trouble with living on the wrong side of the mountains… I felt that, since I was taking a forced vacation, I should do something exciting and vacation-worthy, like try a new restaurant, or go to the theater. On the other hand, I’m feeling very conservative about money at the moment. Last month some car trouble put a load on my credit card of the sort I’ve been careful to avoid for years, and I’m reluctant to spend much of anything until it’s paid off.

In the end I stayed home the whole time. The closest I came to doing something interesting was taking a few macro shots of moss, which was enjoying the weather quite a bit more than I or my soggy dogs.

2017 Garden Goals

My goal for my garden this year is to grow enough food in enough variety to make it almost unnecessary to shop for vegetables during the growing season.

This will be my ninth year messing about with the garden. To date, my method has been to grow whatever seems interesting to me and plant it wherever there’s room. I haven’t paid much attention to the growing needs of specific types of plants, or to the quality of my soil beyond adding bagged dirt and fertilizer now and then. Consequently, I’ve had varying degrees of luck with different plants, and even with the same plants. Some years there are too many tomatoes to handle, and other years there are barely enough for a bowl of salsa.

This year I’m actually going to plan.

My gardening wish list includes growing lights, warming coils or warming pads, and either a digital soil tester or a soil test kit.

Garden Diversity

I’m always trying to get the perfect bee photo. I have an ok camera, but it’s not a DSLR, so the quality’s not always as good as I’d like.

Honeybees are pretty easy to catch, but getting a good angle can be hard. Bumblebees hardly ever hold still, so they’re more of a challenge.

honeybee

bumblebee

Sometimes there are other interesting creatures in the flowers as well.

spider

And every once in while, like this morning, there’s something really cool.

frog1

 

Back, and finally finished with school (almost)

I finished my ePortfolio, which I guess means that now I just have to wait for my degree to arrive in the mail. I won’t lie — it was a lot of work. I felt like all I was doing was regular work and school work since… well, since the last time I posted anything here. I still have a bit of school work to do before I’m all the way done. My “children’s literature” class isn’t over until the first week of May, and I still have one minor and two major projects to complete by then. I will be happy to be done with official school, but I don’t want to slack off. I want to keep reading professional literature and studying things on my own, for professional development, you know.

I bought an air rifle the other day. Z had got one for us to “share” the Christmas before last, but he keeps it in his room all the time and I don’t want to go in there and just take it, because I doubt he’d like that. I got it to shoot rats with. It’s extremely accurate (so far), but I don’t know if I will ever actually shoot a rat.

The rifle is a Gamo Whisper Silent Cat. It doesn’t seem any quieter than Z’s rifle, and most reviewers on Amazon said the silencer didn’t really do anything. For my purposes, the scope is fine, although many people complained about that as well. Besides mentions of those two features, however, the reviews were extremely positive, which led me to choose this rifle over another I was considering: the Daisy 880 Powerline Kit, which came with ammo and protective goggles. Starter kits like that make you feel like you’re getting more, but the quality of what you get is usually less than if you choose and buy each component separately. I chose the Silent Cat because it was touted as being very accurate and effective for small game hunting and pest control. I haven’t killed anything yet, and I probably never will, but if I do I’m pretty confident this rifle can do the job. It shoots .177 caliber pellets at between 1000 and 1250 feet per second.