It's one of those days that are so dark and dreary that you wonder whether it actually qualifies as night time. The rain is coming down so consistently that personal watercraft is the best way to get around. It is nothing short of a miracle that in a couple of months I will be barefoot in the dirt, planting seedlings or seed. Back in the autumn when it felt like the tomatoes would never stop coming and I thought the growing season would never end, I could have sworn off gardening forever, had you asked. But sure enough, the shortened days and chilly temperatures eventually get to me, and I long for the heat and exercise and dirt. "Playing around in the dirt" as my Grandmother would say. The first week of January, I start to get that look about me that makes people ask "So are you planning out your garden yet?" Really, am I that transparent?
The seed catalogs came early this year, before Christmas even. Most of my selections are already made for the planting season, a combination of both heirloom and hybrid varieties. Grandma Hershey's Sugar Peas will be my earliest planting. I'll be trying some new things this year too; pole lima beans, strawberries and black raspberries. Of course, I haven't worked out where anything will go yet. The strawberry patch may end up in the front garden. There will be less flower gardening this year, it is just too tedious to keep up both vegetables and flowers. That's not to say there won't be any, I'm too fond of sunflowers and violas, after all.
On the Table: Shepherd's pie, spinach with cherry tomatoes, warm bread, and a rhubarb pie that was so bitter (or "tart" as my husband keeps correcting me) I could barely choke it down with ice cream while he ate it plain with no problem. My mouth puckers at the thought.
In the Kitchen: Something not having to do with cooking. We are getting ready to move our large kitchen appliances into their rightful corners. For over a year now we have lived with the washer/dryer smack in the middle of the kitchen, positioned at an odd angle. The refrigerator has lived in the front entrance way. We are hoping to shove everything into position in the kitchen. It will be an adjustment, for certain. This does not mean our kitchen is "done" or anywhere near it, but we are hoping that once we have something that resembles a kitchen, we can offer more hospitality.
Around the Home: I was early for a lunch appointment recently (like, an hour early) and it was a complete mistake on my part. Almost unbelievably, like a mirage in the desert, there was a quilt shop in sight of where I parked! It was tiny, but stocked full of tantalizing fabrics and all manner of creative motivation. With my current quilting project years old, and behind on clothing projects as it is, I could not justify a purchase of much right now. But oh, it was a nice way to spend an hour. Well, back to stitching by the stove.