Summertime, and the Living is Easy

I love summer. I have to admit, however, that when August rolls around, I’m starting to get a little bit cranky about life. I’m hot. I can’t think what to cook any more. My pest control guy told me he was afraid of wasps, so they are still buzzing around my back yard with looks of victory in their beady eyes. Japanese beetles are eating my black-eyed susans, and last night I realized they are also munching on my basil. Ugh.

What lifts me up is that five of my favorite people (all of whom I’m related to in some way) celebrate birthdays in August. My sister Bec comes in August to visit and get out of the REAL heat. While my flowering plants are starting to look leggy and tired, my vegetables are flourishing. Well, except for my basil which now has little chomps in the leaves. Anyone know how to get rid of Japanese beetles?

If you will recall, this year I went entirely to pots. I’m talking planting my veggies in pots, not what you were thinking (though I do live in Colorado). It was so successful that I will probably never plant an in-ground garden again. I have never had herbs grow as successfully as in this pot…..

You can’t really see, but there are also chives, thyme, and dill in that same pot. The parsley really took off this year. I plant parsley every year, and almost never remember to use it. The chives and thyme yes. And the dill when I make my pickles. But the parsley gets forgotten. Cream of parsley soup?

I have tomatoes, tomatoes, and more tomatoes. My early girl tomatoes are nearly done, but I have plenty picked. We are eating BLTs, sliced tomatoes, tomato salads. I plan on making up a pot of my mom’s gazpacho, a soup that Bill won’t even consider eating. More for me.

And for the first time ever, my grape tomato plant is flourishing…..

I can eat those like candy.

In this year of Hardly Anything Good Happening, I am pleased as punch that we now have a composting bin sponsored by the City and County of Denver. I had a composting bin of my own years ago, but it never really worked out for me. I was supposed to turn it regularly, but I have no pitchfork, nor any inclination to buy one. I was also supposed to buy worms to put into the compost bin to break down the garbage. Talk about not having any inclination to buy something! Maybe that would be a job for those rotten Japanese beetles.

It doesn’t matter, though, because see above: I plant in pots these days. But for a mere $100/year, the City and County lets us use a green composting bin that we can put out on the curb on every garbage collection day. So I have become a composting fool….

It is bittersweet seeing the hot days of summer heading towards a conclusion. Still, we have autumn to look forward to, plus a visit from our Vermont family.

Plus, I have chili roasting season to look forward to.

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