This and That

I have a whole bunch of things to share with you today, but the first thing I want to share is some good news. Our van didn’t need to get any work done on it today!

I accompanied the mechanic for a test drive, explaining to him when the noise would happen, and how it was so much worse when reversing up an incline and turning left. The garage is in the town my mother lives in, and we got a chuckle over the fact that this town turns out to be completely flat. There were no inclines for him to test it on! He did find a parking lot with room for him to drive around in reverse, so he was able to hear the noise. It just wasn’t as loud as it can get.

He says it’s a rear bearing, but after jacking it up and looking at it more closely, he told me it didn’t need to be done right now. The noise sounded worse than it was. The van is safe to drive. After asking when we’ll need an oil change done next – in about 3000km – he said we could get it all done at once.

So that worked out rather well! Plus, I got to go out for lunch with my mother. 🙂

Meanwhile, in other areas…

The kittens have been moved again.

After cleaning this blanket that had been on the swing bench as best I could, I put it on top of the tool dresser in the sun room, for Beep Beep to sit on as she looks out the window. Of course, it got knocked down. When I came in yesterday, I found Beep Beep sitting here, with all 8 kittens! In the time it took for me to get a pictures, everybody moved. 😀

So it looks like the cats aren’t using the nesting boxes at all anymore. Over the next few days, I’ll clear those out, so they have more space in there. We’re also starting to let them into the old kitchen more often, where it is also much cooler.

Oh, and the kittens have most definitely figured out how to use the litter.

Two cats. Eight kittens. One litter box.

We need to do something about that… *L*

In an earlier post, I’d mentioned finding and gathering some asparagus seeds I found out by the front gate.

Those papery white husks they were in used to be bright red berries!

I will be transplanting indoor plants into larger pots soon, and intend to start some of these in pots as well, to transplant outside next year, or the year after.

While in the garage today, I made a point of checking what progress the swallows have made on their nest, near my mother’s car.

You can see the darker, still damp mud, of what they’ve added most recently. I hope this works out. These mud nests are notorious for falling apart.

You can see on either side, where past nests have been built. On the right are traces of mud, and on the left, the discoloration in the wood shows were a nest once was.

I was able to get a clear photo of the clean up I’d done in the garage by our van, while charging the battery on our mower.

All of that area on the ground along the wall was full of odds and ends, garbage, and our bags of recycling.

It isn’t much, but it’s a lot tidier, and will do until we can finally work on a complete cleaning and sorting of the garage – plus our own stuff is isolated from all the other stuff that isn’t ours and we have to figure out what to do with. Or get rid of. Like the car battery collection. :-/

And finally, some more good news.

While my daughter and I were walking around the yard, we set up the hose to water the grape vines, even though they seemed to have been killed over the winter. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to water them, just in case they were just something that took longer to start leafing out.

We found leaf buds!!

Just a few, but enough to confirm that they have, indeed, survived.

Later, after I’d turned the water off and went to retrieve the hose, I found I had some company.

This little chickadee was very interested in the grape vines! It was flitting all over, from branch to branch, not the least bit disturbed by my standing there, taking pictures. 🙂

I’m really happy that the grapes have survived.

So the grapes are still alive. The haskap transplants are doing very well, and even my mother’s yellow flowers are coming through the mulch around them. The transplanted raspberries are looking as strong and sturdy as the ones that were already there (though what I thought was a lone strawberry plant is looking like something else, as it gets bigger – I just don’t know what! *L*). Our rhubarb has emerged through the mulch in the old kitchen garden, as has some onions that we never planted! The plum trees were blooming like crazy; my daughters observed that they are doing much better, now that the area around them has been cleaned up. The apple trees by the old kitchen and along the spruce grove are starting to bud and bloom. I’ll have to make a point of checking on the ones in the maple grove. I’m seeing Saskatoon blossoms all over. The chokecherries seem to be done their blooming, already. Even the cherry trees that didn’t bloom at all last year are blooming now – and there are a lot more of them than I thought! My mother tells me that the single cherry tree these all came from originated in Poland, by way of my sister. I’m hoping that, this year, we’ll have more than the 3 cherries I found on the one next to the house. 😀

It’s so good to see things doing so well this year! 🙂

The Re-Farmer

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