appreciating normal

As a child, and particularly as a teenager, my Mum frequently scolded me with the phrase "but it's not normal Sandra". I think collecting the mail in my jammies was perfectly normal, just not respectable. The world carried on.

This weekend, I have an intense appreciation of normal. Since we got back over the hill on Friday, the ground has been solid under our feet, under our home, under our lives. Our precious daughter is running around without a bandage and now that the aneurism has clotted off, her month old wound is healing quickly. Nothing is more normal than trying to get children to clean their rooms, and the lumps and bumps and obstacles and road blocks along the day in terms of achieving any progress in this task was ordinarily, frustratingly, solid-groundly normal.

A few hours after we got home from Christchurch, I read online of the Japanese disaster, I noticed on facebook a significant number of friends feeling it is a sign of God's second coming or of the imminent arrival of the next ice age or really just toooo much to cope with. I understand their response. I will admit to being frugal with my news listening time this weekend, in order to get back on even keel and not focused on disaster all the time. It amazes me that Japan can be such an economically 'successful' country and so densely populated at the same time as hosting so many natural disasters. I feel sad and empathetic and also wanting to make some distance.

Back here in Wetville, in the back garden, I'm all about growing food for winter. I even bought some Yates bio gold fertiliser. I doubt it is organic in the sense that I think of organic, but I haven't enough compost for right now, as usual, and I really want some more nutrition in my soil. I've got 12 seedlings of cavolo nero cabbage (or tuscan kale or black cabbage or kale lacinato, but it's great stuff no matter what it is called) to plant out just as soon as I can finish digging up the oregano. The chooks didn't scratch everything up for me, though they did a good job of searching out slugs. I planted some lemon grass in a sheltered and hopefully frost free spot yesterday.

I've kept my car use down given we are in another oil price spike and I've calculated what to do to optimise the mortgage rate drop given we are still in recession. I know nobody is supposed to use that word, but given we were predicted to be climbing out of the trough mid last year and in an era of rampant inflation months ago, and yet more jobs seem to disappear weekly and food prices go up while house prices drop, what else would anyone like to call it?

I have a new incentive to sew up fast and furiously. Driven crazy by children who wind each other up at night, FH and I are contemplating giving up our precious study so the children can sleep in separate rooms, something we had thought originally wouldn't happen for another couple of years. So we need to magic some space out of nowhere on a budget of nothing, or nothing plus maybe $200. So if I can sew up all the fabric in my drawers (the kindy dressups project should help this enormously), then that makes it more possible I can fit my sewing things in the bottom of my wardrobe. I know know I know that if the sewing machine is not set up permanently, then less sewing happens, but tough on me really. I'll be rather sick of sewing once I've cleared the drawers I have now anyway.

That's it. I washed lots of clothes. Really lots of clothes and I still haven't finished. I made hummus for the week ahead and pasta/bacon/broccoli/red pepper/anchovies/garlic /sun dried tomatoes for dinnerand thought I really am sick of having no oven. Hopefully Steve Austin the superhero of fixing small appliances in our small wet town will work magic on it tomorrow and then I can roast things and bake things and dry eggshells and make muffins and keep things warm and have a device for when my window of cooking opportunity is 2pm and I have to be out of the house from 3pm until dinner time...


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