Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I Can See Garlic from My House

DAY 369

I planted garlic in the fall and now a miracle is happening in my garden! I went out on Sunday to push some dirt around to feel like I was “gardening” and then I saw them... 8 of the 12 garlic cloves I put in the ground in November sprouting up about an inch above the soil. And the gardener was happy. Today, I did a “from my kitchen window” glance around the backyard for branches, squirrels and cardinals and realized I could see the garlic sprouts from there! Very exciting.

It really is a life metaphor to see something survive and thrive through what seemed like the longest, coldest, grayest winter EVER. Plant something, let it sit and see it sprout. Simple, profound.

So as I make plans for an expanded 2011 garden with kale, tomatoes, butternut squash, more basil and more lettuce, I can see how this whole grow your own food thing can be addictive. Don’t worry, I will not be getting chickens and goats at this point. I will leave that to the experts! OK Wendy Thomas??? Check out Wendy’s great blog “Lessons Learned from the Flock” at simplethrift.wordpress.com. I bow down to all farmers and animal tenders and to the time and energy and love it must take to raise animals - I mean really, my cats Buddy and Curtis are a little bit of work, but they are pretty self-sufficient.

I am a big fan of goat cheese, I must say...hmmmm....OK, I promise – no goats...I will leave that one to Missy Martz! Missy gave me a million dollar gift recently – a precious bar of goat’s milk soap that she MADE. With some help from her goats of course. I just about fell over when she gave it to me...I cannot imagine what it takes to take care of the goat, get the milk and THEN make soap. I am in awe. I have the bar in a spot of honor to admire it daily – I almost don’t want to ever use it! It is a symbol of all that is right with the world...

I am still deciding how to “do” year two of Nothing New – I think I will continue with the numbering of days...I also need to decide how I am going to NOT spend money in Year Two.

Meanwhile, I am going to get some sleep and dream about garlic and goats...Have a Nothing New Day! ~Kristin

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The End or the Beginning?

DAY 1 (or Day 366 - Year Two!)

Yesterday was Day 365! So...my counting of days was way off...I don't know what I was thinking! I started Nothing New on March 19, 2010, so of course I would be "done" on March 18, 2011...that was yesterday! For some reason I had my last day as next week some time...numbers of any kind are not my strength - I have other gifts and talents!

OK, well, then - wonder what I should to tomorrow - tempted to go to the Mall (oh, no say it isn't so! Run away, run away!) because I need a pants suit! Looked in three consignment shops today but no luck...I will go through my closet first. Maybe I can mix and match some items to create a faux-pants suit...

I really need to decide what I am going to do for Year Two and how to create even better boundaries. Secretly, I kind of want to do some shopping...argh. So maybe I allow myself to shop for new things once a year? That seems reasonable...or am I rationalizing???? Oh dear. Late nite ponderings - I will probably have shopping nightmares...

Any advice?

Have a Nothing New Day (and Night)! Kristin

Friday, March 18, 2011


DAY 355

My “ride the bus” month did not happen – at all. I could not quite get it together to make the time to get the schedule, find the stops and build in the buffer travel time. I will table this challenge for a challenge month in my second year of Nothing New! I have decided to stay on this track for another year, implement all my learnings from this year and apply them on a new level in Year Two. More to follow on my plans for ramping things up for Part Deux!

Meanwhile, I have been tracking how much trash I create as a challenge – started on 2/18 and just finished on 3/18...I was inspired by my friend Rebecca’s lifestyle changes and commitments to reduce what she contributes to the landfill. See her post on February 14. I will not list every piece of trash here – as fascinating as that would be – I will give you an overview of the last 20 days, how’s that?

I work hard to compost first, recycle second then throw it out. So much can be composted and I am amazed at how it all works out there in my compost pile – even in the winter. I have an inherited dark green plastic compost container (thanks JoeyO!) and dump a 10 gallon bucket of biodegradable yumminess :)out there once a week or so. Every time I go out and make a deposit, the pile is back down to where it was the week before - a tiny little miracle of nature. I feel good about this AND I am concerned that composting is a bright spot it my life, but hey, whatever it takes right? Check this website out to join the thousands of happy peppy people who compost! http://www.howtocompost.org/

Thankfully, my town recycles and picks up my large clear trash bag of paper, glass and aluminum once a week. I appreciate this and am glad to have recycling in my habit skill set. Most of the recycle bag is filled with paper....argh...paper! So much paper. Junk mail – catalogs, newsletters, promotions – on and on – I call and get off their lists any time I can. Envelopes with annoying cellophane windows that I remove and throw away dominate the paper mix along with juice bottles and cat food cans, laundry soap bottles and other grocery related containers. As I write this, I realize I have a lot of room for reducing the amount of stuff I recycle! The juice dilemma is such that there is always a non-recyclable lid or pull tab. Need to find a good alternative here...any ideas? Make my own OJ? With real oranges? Hmmmm...I should also cut back and then eliminate the canned cat food...must discuss this with Buddy and Curtis.

Because of my efforts, I ended up with three medium sized bags of trash for the month (down from four) and three big bags of recyclables (up from two). I will measure one more month to see if I can reduce my recyclables with some shopping habit changes.

More to follow – Have a Nothing New Day! ~Kristin