Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Update at last

Hello...been a loooong time. I really, really wish I got to write more. It does me so much good.

Sigh...well, we have the chickens, in the living room dusting the place up. They're 3 1/2 weeks old now, no longer cute fluff balls, now half-feathered-out and distinctly untidy looking. The coop is making progress, not done. Soon, though, all the "spring" stuff will be planted in the garden (should already be, but at least we're close), and the focus will shift more to the coop. I feel comfortable with where we are, anyway. The things I'm not comfortable with are how little I can get done when I'm alone with Evelyn and what a pit the house is. "Spring cleaning"--are you kidding? It sounds great, but I'm too busy breaking my back in the garden.

Right now I'm in a good mood--nothing like a project yielding results to start a decent morning. On Saturday, I and a couple of others set up a booth at the Maryland Heartland Sustainable Living Fair for our little sustainable living group. Last night I took the signup sheet we put out and sent out invitations to join our Yahoo group...and this morning there are already three new members! Now I'm planning strawberry picking for this weekend, trying to get people to come out and share a picnic, and hoping to goodness they don't run out of berries before we get there. And that's entirely possible, since several of us are involved in the farmer's market, so we can't very well go first thing Saturday. Argh. Well, there's always next weekend.

So, as Evelyn's miraculously still sleeping, I've been catching up on the news. Always a depressing activity, and at the moment, it always makes me once again want to yank Jacob's 401K, take the penalties, and put the money to work. I have no faith in savings in the current climate, and that is saying something, because Jacob and I are both very play-it-straight, pinch-penny, savings kinda people. But with the global economy disassociating themselves from the dollar as fast as they can, and the gov't printing money as fast as it can, forclosures still going crazy and predicted to hit another "wave" this summer, etc., etc., etc., I am thinking I can come up with better uses for our money than watching it burn. We still need to replace the gutters and a piece of siding that blew off now over a year ago, we'd love to blow in some more insulation, a home energy audit seems like a great idea, and I for one would like to see a small solar array, if only to keep the chest freezer and maybe one or two other things running. That freezer is a really valuable part of our food storage system.

Basic status right now is that in some ways I'm really proud of us--picture perfect garden, decent food stores, good collection of tools, coop's coming along nicely, and in general we've done a truly monumental amount of work all while raising a very high-spirited baby into a remarkably thoughtful, intelligent, and loving toddler. In other ways, I am completely overwhelmed by the work still to do and dismayed by how much trouble I have with, say, housekeeping, or keeping in touch with people. And, of course, by how much of my time Evelyn still demands (and demands is exactly the right term; you should hear her) and how little able I seem to be able to do anything about that, like, say, do a few dishes without her screaming and trying to push me away from the sink.

Meanwhile, it's fairly clear that the world I grew up in is crumbling around my ears. People naturally expect "the end of the world as we know it" to be some big, dramatic event, but the fact is, history usually takes place over the course of months and years, and when you sum them up history-book style, the crises of the past and coming months and years would probably look pretty dramatic. So of course I feel pressured to be the best I can, to do as much as I can and then some, and when I inevitably fall short, it's hard on the self-confidence. And, of course, frightening. It's all so very frightening.

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