Here I am last spring with my daughter, now almost 15 months old. She kept me so busy adjusting to mommy-hood last summer that my yard and veggie garden were both a terrific shambles. But let's go back just a bit further: I was fortunate enough in early 2010 to be offered a super flexible part-time gig in landscape design. I work mostly from home, enabling me to be a stay-at-home SUPER MOM and still save my sanity by getting out of the house now and then to meet with clients when my husband is home for our girl. I'm pretty much on the phone or computer or drawing designs every second she naps, but what else can I do? I couldn't bear to miss my little girl growing up, and yet I didn't want to give up my career completely either. So, life is crazy, but we deal. Housework gets neglected until company is expected, laundry piles up until we run out of clean underwear, the lawn grows lush and high until the neighbors start giving us dirty looks (hey, we're saving gas and the environment), and the veggies are pretty much at the mercy of the elements once the seeds are planted.
I was very disappointed in my gardening self in 2010. I worked on designing and improving other people's yards while my own stood neglected. Yes, I want to look like the Horticulturist I'm supposed to be. Yes, I want to be one of those tree-huggers that grows their own healthy produce at home to feed the family. I really want my Girl to enjoy the great outdoors and learn about where our food comes from. But how to find the time? Well, in 2011 I've got a plan to hopefully increase my odds of success:
1. Simplify the veggie garden. Grow only stuff we truly like to eat fresh. Carrots? What for? You can buy a bag already washed and peeled for a couple bucks. Besides, I don't do well with produce grown underground. I want to see what the hell's going on, so carrots and potatoes are out. OK, maybe radishes, 'cause Hubby likes those. Dang it, I said simplify!
2. Size matters. Our 1 acre homestead came with a HUGE veggie garden plot. I've always felt like I had to live up to filling it. I've always failed spectacularly. This year we're going smaller. So there, former homeowners.
3. Location, location, location. The aforementioned huge veggie plot is way in the 'back 40' at the far end of our long, narrow lot, about as far away from the house as you can get. It's a pain to trek back and forth for every tool, hose or pair of gloves I forgot in the garage. I can't haul my Girl out there to 'help' without forgetting sunscreen, bugspray, snacks, toys or some darn thing. Not to mention it's just far enough away that if I kind of squint my eyes, I just see green stuff and can't really tell that it's weeds that need pulling. Therefore, the weeds don't exist, and I can relax on my patio, closer to the beer fridge in the garage. Poor, abandoned tomato plants. This year, I'm having my handyman husband construct me some raised bed boxes way closer to the house for veggies. That way the Girl and I can putter around closer to home and it's not such an expedition each time we want to garden.
Problems solved! (?)