This month is going to be busy. School ends for the summer this month, so I'm going to be jamming as much in to the first 20 days of this month as possible on the work front before I end up having to worry about summer intensive speech therapy and occupational therapy as well as summer school...oh and keeping two kids entertained and occupied. It's going to be fun (and I mean that both sardonically and sincerely *laugh*).
A good portion of my goals this month are going to revolve around this...
This, my friends, is my yard. And my land.
When we moved here it was like this, although a bit less overgrow around the edges of the yard (the undergrowth reclaims a bit more of the yard every year it seems).
We actually own over 2 acres of land, but it's mainly overgrown with trees and wild rose bushes and devil's club (a really nasty spiked weed that grows up here).
We kept hoping to rent a piece of equipment so we could clear the land and use more of it, but we've been dead broke since we moved here by the summertime (the one year we actually made money since we moved here was the year my daughter was battling her stomach condition, so medical bills ate every bit of money we had saved), so it just hasn't happened.
I have finally decided that I'm tired of it. I'm tired of waiting for things to happen that probably never will. So, I'm going to hit the yard with things I do have. Mainly me, some heavy clothes to protect me from thorns and thick gloves along with some pruners and a tree saw. I might not get far, but if I can even reclaim some of the land from the super freaky fast growing varieties of trees we have up here, I'll feel good that I at least was able to accomplish something.
I am hoping to clear out a spot to the right in the first photo above. That's where my raspberry bushes normally would be. If the moose hadn't decimated them over the past two winters as well as a blight a couple of years ago. Out of ten raspberry bushes in the back yard I now have two left and they are producing nothing at this point and I got a LOAD of dead underbrush there that needs to be removed. I'm calling them a loss and am just going to work on mowing them down and clearing them. I'm then going to move my rhubarb plant that is not doing well in the damp compact soil it's currently in to that area and hopefully I can find someone who is willing to part with some more rhubarb plants to plant there as well (I had a friend who offered me some plants last year and I need to contact them again and see if the offer is still open).
I'll worry about replanting raspberry bushes at some later date (I have one in the front yard at least that I can hopefully salvage along with a kind of scraggly one in the back yard. I'm hoping that is enough to at least keep them producing SOME fruit, right along with gooseberry bushes, fruit trees and kiwi vines. But, that's for when we have money to spend and when we have land cleared to put them *dreamy look*.
Anyhow, that's where the majority of my time will HOPEFULLY be spent this month. We do have other commitments, though, such as eye doctor appointments for my son, allergist appointment for allergy shots (for the son again), dental appointments (for my husband), orthodontist appointments (for my daughter) and chocolate appointments (for me...ha!).
Past that, this month is going to be seeing me canning more things as I find them cheap enough to work into my reduced grocery budget (as the 60.00 per week grocery budget is just going to be there until further notice). I found some raspberries and blackberries from last year in the freezer and it's enough to actually do something nice with, so I'm planning on pulling those out this week to can and also canning more apple products since I have two drawers pretty much full of reduced apples (yay!). I also am planning on canning some orange products (like marmalade...if I can find a good recipe for JUST orange marmalade...the recipes I have in my Ball book are all fancy ones that I don't want to make) as well to use up some oranges in the fridge.
And I am determined, once school let's out and working on the yard becomes harder (I can't leave my son unattended as he's a flight risk) to get some clothes sewing done. I really want to start on some clothes, especially for me as a lot of my clothes (like my sleep pants) are just plain dying on me.
So, anyway, here's my goals for this month!
Monthly Goals: May 2016
- Continue to watch and tend garden.
- Try to keep on top of weeds to give seedlings room to grow (and make sure they ARE weeds before pulling them ;).
- Plant basil seeds indoors (I finally found my few ceramic indoor planters I had out in the garage).
- Go to nursery. Buy flowers for daughter to plant (I think she wants petunias now...I'm trying to lean her toward completely edible flowers, but we'll see how that goes *laugh*). I have been saving change I found on the ground or in the laundry specifically for garden plants (we said "nope" to yard sales this year as we can't really afford any disposable income that doesn't have a specific purpose, so I reallocated my "fun money" for the garden instead), so I'm hoping to buy a couple of rosemary plants and the flowers with that (I have had NO luck since moving here growing rosemary from seeds and I've tried several different brands. It's sad, but it works so well at repelling insects that I really do want to get some more to help repel the spider mites).
- Clear raspberry bush bank.
- Look up online how (and when) to move rhubarb plants and move rhubarb to cleared bank.
- Clear as many trees and bush undergrowth as I can before school lets out for the summer.
- Move one still alive and actually doing "okay" raspberry bush (look this up online too on how the best way to do that is) that is in the front part of the yard to a better spot, preferably out of direct sunlight (it grows, but the raspberries bake into little briquettes every year).
- Spray yard with Aza Max to disrupt spider mite breeding cycle (it's an organic product I bought last year and I'm hoping it works).
- Scrub children's bedroom walls down and clean their ceiling fans before school lets out (and it gets really hard to do with kids underfoot).
- Work on general plan to reorganize master bedroom closet (as it needs to be cleaned out and reset BAD!).
- Finish deep cleaning kitchen.
- Get through various appointments for the month.
- Get TEFRA care coordinator paperwork filled out and e-mailed back to new care coordinator so she can get wheels in motion.
- Redeem Swagbucks and order new edition (or newer as it's last year's edition) of the Ball Book of Home Preserving (it has 500 recipes in it and my old edition really needs some rest as it's been used hard over the years). This I already got done today, so yay!
- Can apple pie filling
- Can apple sauce
- Can raspberry pie filling
- Look up orange canning recipes online and in Ball book and figure out what neat things I can make with some.
- Work on clothing for myself after the end of school.
- Work on mending.
And there you are folks. Some of my goals for this month. You up to anything this month?