Weekend Coffee Share; STAYING BUSY

This morning I really need my coffee. I’ve been awake half the night thinking. How about you? How was your week?

I’ve been keeping myself busy, even busier than usual this week. Trying to not think about the fact that my daughter is not with me. However happy I am for her. It is hard! There’s a thousand thoughts running around in my head. I’m as far from the worrying kind as one could be. I know by experience that the only thing in life that is constant, is change. I can handle her being away for a visit with her dad, no problem, but there is even talk about more. I’m not really sure how I am going to handle that. He has offered to let her start school in his town, in another state. She is happy, and thrilled about finally getting some dad time. All I know is that I would do anything for that little girl. I love her to death. Since I found out that I was pregnant with her I’ve been showering her with love, reading to her, and had educational conversation with her every single day she’s been with me. I’ve happily tailored my life around her, only accepting jobs where I have been able to bring her with me. Just to spend as much precious time as possible with my daughter. (Imagine how easy that have been, to find/create jobs where you can bring a small child.) The few days now and then she haven’t been with me, have been an exception to the rule, and very few in between.

I want her to have a relationship with her dad, that is why I gave up my life in my home country. (I love America, and it’s my home now, but in the beginning it wasn’t as easy as I showed family and friends.) So far, I’ve felt that we have not been a priority. In the end I guess one could say that we have different survival strategies for hard times, that I read as not being a priority. That is why I left her father (but not the country,) when she was a baby/toddler. We’ve been able to stay friends, and I think highly of him. For the most part we’ve been living within a few hours from each other, and when he’s been able to make time, I’ve been driving her to him. For her sake. I want her to know her dad. I feel that I have been going out of my way, a lot, to make it happen. Now he lives an 11 hour drive away, without traffic. In reality it takes two days to drive safely with a kid, one way. All of a sudden he wants to see her more. So far it’s been very easy to cooperate around her. I am so hoping that it will stay that way. I think it is. I hope it will. It’s been heavily on my mind this week. My daughter is my number one priority. Her well being, and her education is more important than anything to me. You get the idea, lots of things to think about. What is in her best interest? That’s all I really care about. But how do one know what’s in her best interest? My gut feeling want to keep her close, always, but a little voice tells me that’s selfish. How could I deny her spending more time her dad, that she adores? I’m sure the universe have a solution for this as well. Please just make your solution known in time before the new school year! The uncertainty is killing me. I can work with a definite decision, and make the best of it. Not knowing is challenging.

In the beginning of the week it was easy to think of other things, as my cousin and her boyfriend from Sweden, and my aunt from Washington was visiting. I wrote about our visit to Lassen Volcanic National Park, and McCloud Falls earlier this week. Having them here was wonderful. To say the least.

We had a visit from our amazing barefoot trimmer Donna on Tuesday. Fancy’s hooves were very neglected when I bought her in April. They were cracked, too short on most places, with long parts sticking out on other. Her heals were kind of pushed up into her hooves, and her toes were partly too long, and flared. She was walking on her toes. She had an untreated abscess on her left front hoof. After a first trim, Donna’s been balancing her hooves once a month. They are growing out nicely, and her heals are starting to take a more normal position. (You can see the progress in the photos below. There is still a way to go, but it is going in the right direction.) She is moving more freely by the day. She is making great progress. This week Donna told me that Fancy will not have any lasting injuries on her hooves, from the neglect. It’s such great news! The new growth is straight, and looks very healthy. Nutrition, and TLC goes a long way. Right now Fancy is on alfa alfa (hay), Stable Mix, and California Trace.

I ordered a new bitless bridle for her last week, that came this week. It’s handmade with her measurements, made out of biothane.

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Doesn’t she look beautiful in it? You’ll have more control if you put the noseband a little further down, compared to where I placed it on Fancy. (She has an old injury in her mouth. Healed, but she has a bad deformation on her tongue. Her tongue was almost cut off at some point, and left untreated.) I have only used the headstall for work-in-hand (on the ground) so far. It seems like she really like it. I’ve successfully started, and restarted, different horses in this type of halter. Including wild mustangs. It’s soft, but the signals to your horse is very clear, and easy for them to understand. I order them from Moss Rock Endurance (they are having problems with their website right now, but they are working on it.) They also have great customer service. If you’re interested in one for your horse, contact the owner, Lisa. She has been very helpful to me throughout the years.  

Do you need a refill on that coffee? Do you have a  garden this year? How is it doing now? Is it at is peak? Or have you already harvested the majority of your bounty? I’d love to hear what garden zone you are in, and about the plants that thrives there. 

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I’ve planted three different varieties of smaller tomatoes; grape, cherry, and cocktail. When I pick them, I just pick the ripe ones, all together. The different tastes makes for great salads. Speaking of which, I tried this recipe the other day, it was amazing.

I’ve harvested at least 10 lbs of cherry tomatoes this week, some squash, cucumber, salad, and corn. To the benefit of friends and family. I’ve also added one Meyer Lemon tree, and one Navel Orange tree, to my container garden. I’ve been wanting to add citrus trees for a while, so this is exciting 🙂 It’s a start. There will be more. I’ve also done a lot of mulching. We’ve had three digit temperatures the whole week, most days more than 110. (The new saltwater pool is even more awesome than I imagined. I’ve spent a lot of time there this week.) I’ve started to clean out plants that I already finished harvesting from, some squash, and corn. Those beds I’ve started to prepare for my fall garden. The fall garden is still weeks away, but I will keep feeding those beds until it’s time. I spent time planning my fall garden this week, and ordered the heirloom seed I need from RareSeeds.Com. I will have eggplant, carrots, lettuce, kale, Chinese meat radish, and two tomato varieties in my fall garden. I will start those seeds indoors as soon as they arrive. When the temperatures are cool enough, I will plant them outdoors. 

I have not been able to write anything on my book this week. Maybe next week? LOL. On an interesting note, I’ve had three hawks visiting me for hours every day. There’s a hummingbird feeder hanging from a tree, a few feet outside the living room window. Someone placed a beautiful bird bath made out of stone underneath. There’s never any humming birds there. Now these three hawk, have started to hang out there (maybe that’s why there are no hummingbirds there..) Sometimes it’s just one, or two hawks, but most of the time three. I’m far from a bird expert, but I believe it’s two males, and one female. They are just a few feet from the window, and I’ve enjoyed watching them very much. If I’m sitting very still on a chair outside, or in the pool, they come. If I make any moves, they are gone. I have not yet been able to take their picture. I’ll work on that. I don’t know what kind of hawks they are. They are on the smaller side. 

I hope you’re having an amazing week! Don’t get me wrong, despite my thoughts about my daughter in the beginning, I am having a good week, just more to think about than usual. My dog Gretchen is working wonders on my happiness levels. She always does. I’m working a little harder than normal to keep my zen balanced this week. I’d love to hear about your week! Help yourself to another cup of coffee, and tell me about it 🙂 

Love,

Ms Zen

 

PS. I am NOT an affiliate to any of the links I share. I just enjoy sharing things I like, and appreciate.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Order

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This time of the year a lot of my time is dedicated to creating order in my garden. To organize my container garden in to a system. My system is based on the different plants need of sunlight, shade, and water. They are planted in rows, and/or groups, depending on their needs. In the photo above you can see the barefoot peach trees that I planted a couple weeks ago. They are already getting leaves, and seem to thrive in their sunny spot, in the middle of my garden. The tan smart pots in the back is home to young bell pepper, and squash plants.

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I planted 8 different varieties of heirloom tomatoes this spring. Unfortunately they are only semi organized …my daughter played with the labels. They are neatly transplanted to bigger containers, and organized in rows, with sturdy cages around every plant. However, because of the little label incident..I do not know where the cherry tomatoes are, or where my green zebras are, or any of the other varieties..We’re having surprise tomatoes this year! LOL. It’s interesting, some of the plants are really small, and some are 5ft high by now.

My garden is all organic. Some of the plants that are more prone to get damaged by different bugs and insects, have mint planted around them. You can see mint on the left side of the fig tree (below.) Mint is a great plant to sow here and there. It helps to keep bugs away, spread easily, and is delicious for cold drinks, in food etc.

The vegetables usually needs to be water 1-2 times every day, while the container fruit trees needs water every other day when it’s more than 90 degrees, and less often if it happens to be cooler (very rare during the summer.) My garden is constantly changing every year. I like learning about different vegetables and trying a few new ones every year. The number of fruit trees I have is also changing. I give some away to friends, sell a couple here and there, plant some new ones etc.

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The planting season starts in the beginning of April outdoors, (February-March if I have access to a greenhouse.) In the beginning of June I’m usually done with the planting. I just finished organizing the garden for this year. Now all I’m doing is watering, weeding, and fertilizing, and harvesting of course.

Bring it on! Let it grow! I’m ready!

The more though I put in when it comes to organizing my garden during the planting season, the easier it is to take care of the garden the rest of the year. My goal is to eventually have produce all year round.

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Cherries are in season right now. The cherries in the photo above are Rainer Cherries. They are sweet and very delicious. I’ve been stocking my freezer with Rainer Cherries, and Sweet Dark Cherries for a couple weeks now. It’s a tedious work to pit cherries. It’s well worth it! I usually put the pitted cherries on a tray, and put them in the freezer for about an hour, before freezing them in quarter sized containers. In that way the freeze quickly, preserving all the nutrients. It’s a great way to preserve them without adding any sugar. They are great for snacks, or in smoothies all year round. (I even freeze some of the pits. I’m saving some seeds from the fruit/vegetables that I enjoy the most, to be planted later on. I’m slowly building my own seed bank. My goal is to one day have a “real” homestead.)

I enjoy the order of the different seasons. Here in northern California the gardening season is long. At some point during the year, you can grow almost anything you’d like. You can have a spring crop, a summer crop, and a late fall/winter crop. That is one of the things I love the most about California.

My garden is my happy place. Right now it’s my favorite every day zen spot. It’s where I center myself, and find my balance. I hope this week have been wonderful for you!

Subscribe below, and feel free to copy the strategies that fits your zen. 

Love,

Ms Zen