My continuation of Sharon Astyk’s now-completed “Independence Days” project (June-Aug 2022), which offered a framework for recognising how we’re building resiliency, community, and accountability that will make our lives better now and in the future. Many of Sharon’s categories are (or could be) related to gardening, so it seems to fit here on this blog. Equally, none of them has to do with gardening. They’re all multifaceted.

  • Plant something: plant, start something

Nothing planted yet, but on Monday I’ll be planting pea seeds, arugula seeds, and kale starts.

Husband put up the fence around the vegetable garden on Friday.

putting up fence – 21 April
  • Harvest something: harvest, forage or glean

Nothing. (Though I did buy a “cocktail attire” outfit, top and skirt, from local consignment store for $16 on Wed.)

bought thifted clothes – 19 April
  • Preserve something: food or local community resource

Preserve local resources: Ordered takeout dinner from local pizza place on Wednesday. Picked up treats at local bakery on Friday. Also ate at a local seafood restaurant in Kittery, ME, on Thursday.

cat almost picked up a pizza, too – 20 April

Preserve sanity: We took a trip to coastal southern Maine on Thursday and walked on trails and on the beach at Laudholm Farm in Wells, ME. Also walked around the lake on Sat., and took two walks in town (one long) on Tues. and Wed. We had a lot of rain this week.

  • Waste Not: reduce waste, reuse, salvage, repair, give away to an actual person

Husband repaired my 30-yr-old resusable Hannaford bag on Tuesday.

  • Want Not: food and emergency supplies, increase economic security, reorganize to use/waste less

I went over the finances (investments) on Monday so I’m up to date on the state of our financial affairs. I don’t know whether that will increase economic security but at least we know where we stand, which is basic.

  • Eating The Food: shop the pantry, new recipes, creative use of leftovers, help feed others

Had assorted leftovers (from dinner made Monday, pizza bought Wed, and lunch out on Thurs) on Tues, Thurs, Fri, Sat, and Sunday! Nothing especially creative though.

Husband made three baugettes on Monday (one went to a neighbour that afternoon) and on Sunday he made English muffins using the dump-gleaned baking rings from last week — that was a new recipe and baking process for him.

  • Caregiving/Mutual Aid: contribute to community support systems, volunteer, mutual aid, advocate

Nothing except lending moral support on a few days to the guys working on renovating the walls and floors at the local car museum.

car museum flooring – 18 April
  • Skill up: particularly if they help us get along, grow, make our new reality better

Husband participated in an Austin Healey tech talk on Monday evening, and he learned to make English muffins on Sunday. We both spent time with Merlin, listening to birds in the yard, around town, and on our trip to Maine.

  • Tend & Maintain: cleaning stuff, replacing supplies, car or bike maintenance, stuff to prevent failure/breaking/hassle down the line

Quite a bit of this this week. We both had hair appts and I had a dermatology appt. I rescheduled a mammogram that had been scheduled when we’re going to be away. Husband bleached rain barrels and the upstairs toilet. He also sawed wood from pruned trees and shrubs for firewood, and as mentioned he installed the vegetable garden fence (bamboo piles, nylon mesh/fishing line/twine). And he cleaned out the four birdfeeders, now down until late next fall. I thoroughly cleaned out the kitchen sinks and drain strainers (and did my usual cleaning of toilets, counters, floors, etc., plus laundry, grocery shopping, dinner-making, and so on). And I did some weeding and soil work in the veg. garden. We both vacuumed and cleaned cat’s litter box regularly.

  • Winter is coming: making our relationships, family life, home, community, immediate surroundings, jobs better for a long and hard upcoming year or few years

A friend sent a hand-carved (by her hands) wooden cat as a sympathy gift for my friend who died a few weeks ago. I sent that same friend (the carver) birthday gifts and a card this week.

received from friend – 19 April

Another friend’s mother died on Thurs and I’ll be sending a condolence card this week.

Talked a few times (and texted) with my sister, who was visiting my other sister in VA on Thurs on her way to attend a cousin’s son’s wedding in SC on Fri and Sat.

On Wed., we had the college friends’ Zoom call (4 of us) for 1.5 hours, and on Friday I attended Salon in person (3 in person and 1 on Zoom). No permaculture this week (or next). Sunday I attended Dharma Sunday (meditation on alternating or simultaneously practising tonglen and seeking refuge) via Zoom for an hour. Husband chatted with neighbour for a bit when he took him a baguette on Monday.

Dharma Sunday Zoom – 23 April

It’s feeling springy, with all the rain and temps in the 40s and 50s. Leaves are starting to form on trees and shrubs, forsythia are beginning to bloom around town, and grass is greening. Lots of my perennials are emerging. Hoping we can sit outside to eat at restaurants in another few weeks, and when the rain stops that I can plant more early seeds.

Also, the loons are back at the local lakes!

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