I don’t know about you, but I still feel like Summer days are radically different from any other day during the year. I think it all goes back to being a kid and spending 9 months of the year in school then waking up one day and realizing that I didn’t have to go to school – for. three. months! Now I really enjoyed school, but I also enjoyed the time freedom that came with summer. No set schedules, vacations, swimming all day, staying up late, sleeping in late. Even though I don’t have kids of my own and haven’t been on a “school” schedule in decades, I still feel the same way come June 1.
I was be-bopping around blogland the other day and found a blogger who is promoting an activity called “Jumpstart June“. Basically, it’s to encourage people to identify and finish one project, maybe something that’s been put off”, by the end of June. It’s a great idea and I’m a sucker for these types of mini goal setting.
Now you would think that I would launch into my “Jumpstart June” project at this point in the post. Well, I’m not. I did toss the idea around for a couple of days, but finally decided that I couldn’t pick just one project and besides I have many projects that I’m currently working on. That all being said, the process of thinking about my projects and my supplies led me to another idea.
I am setting a goal for the Summer (June-August) to only use the supplies I currently own to finish my projects. I’m calling it Project UWYH (Use What You Have). It’s a weird, awkward title, but sometimes weird and awkward is just the prescription to help me remember to not just hop over to the craft/diy store to buy what I need. With a little time and creativity, I’m going to hopefully be able to accomplish my goals with my current stash of supplies. I will share my finished results as they happen.
So as we move into summer, what are your plans, diy or otherwise?
“Project: UWYH, huh? Sounds like a noise Woody would make. But I digress. So will you be making anything for us? Toys, treats, new beds?? Just some suggestions to add to your list.”
My parents suffered through the Great Depression of the 1930’s. Then, they suffered through the rationing of WWII. Finally, when all of America was booming during the 1950″s, my mom suffered an incurable deterioration of her back that left her an invalid during my youth. So, my parents were the poster child of UWUH, because they couldn’t afford any other method. And the lessons in life that I learned as their child are priceless, because, through it all, they always had hope, and hope inspired them to seek their goals anyway. Even if their methods were unconventional, they sought their goals anyway.
I’ll tell you about my current UWUH. I have quite the vegetable garden. I enjoy the satisfaction of eating salads, naming the ingredients from my own garden. Currently, we use lettuce, green onions, radishes, tomatoes, mesclun, Swiss chard, and kale, picked fresh from just out the back door. Soon we’ll have carrots, more tomatoes, and peppers of all sorts. My summer crops of cucumbers, squash, peas and beans will come along in about a month. In decorative pots, I grow Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme, (Hmm, that sounds like a song) along with Cilantro, and Basil. I find it enjoyable to visit my garden in the evening and gloat how it gives back, as well as provides beauty. You see, many of my vegetables grow among the flowers and bushes of my flower garden. Next to a Gardenia you may find butter lettuce. By an Azalea, there is a planting of kale. Among the Iris (which had a fabulous showing this spring) is a number of veggies. Here’s the UWUH: I plant everything from seed. A pack of seeds will plant dozens of plants for $1.98. My collection of seed packs demonstrates I’m possibly afflicted with Hoarding Disorder. But, it’s cheap, fun, and you can eat the healthy veggies. And this year I planted my whole garden from seed packs I already had.
OK, one more: A friend has his cucumbers growing up a section of hog wire fence staked at an angle. The cucumbers are easy to see, hanging there on the underside of the fence. Instead of going to Home Depot to purchase a roll of fencing, I built my planting trellis out of branches pruned from my neighbor’s Mulberry tree that hangs over my fence. They were woven together into a grid about 6′ tall by 8′ wide, held together by zip ties. It looks “natural”. Actually, it looks like a Cherokee Papuche.
I’ve seen your cucumber trellis and it’s a masterpiece! Through your comment about your parents, I had a thought. I wonder if we’re more creative and innovative when it’s a choice rather than a necessity? And is it the same when the options are limited by choice rather than necessity? Things to ponder. My favorite sentence, “Even if their methods were unconventional, they sought their goals anyway.” Awesome!