Sunday, 25 March 2007

Sunday 25th March 07

Well I got my lie-in, although it looked better on the clocks than it really was, as last night I put the clocks forward to BST. So a lie-in til 9 was officially 10am. Great!

Gill needed to have more rest as feeling ropey and I spent the morning with the boys, including a cycle to the Co-op shop for some provisions and a 'training cycle ride'. Made lunch and welcomed Gill down to the land of the living, she was determined to take the washing out of the machine and hang it on the line outside but I made her take it easy and I did it. She doesn't trust me not to drop stuff... rightly so as I did drop one bit of underwear, but it was OK as she didn't see!

During the afternoon my eldest son agreed to help me put up an octagonal composter which I was given over in Blackpool at a 'Master Composter' event last year, and has been on loan to St Nicks for a while. It is made of 16 green plastic panels which interlock and fit together and are held by 8 rods which thread down the joints. Having two people to make it is a lot easier. We placed it on top of a wooden pallet with added slats to (hopefully) make it less easy for rats to get into it. They shouldn't be able to get in through the plastic sides but they will use the gaps in the base pallet to find shelter. I'm on the lookout for solid wood pallets and will replace the slatted ones gradually, to reduce the access. I didn't have a rat until this winter, but now there's some evidence of activity. What they don't like is disturbance, so I need to dig out the one they're in and make life uncomfortable before they breed. I co-exist with mice in the garden but have a different attitude to rats.

Then I put up the trampoline as the boys were wanting to do soething active. We leave the frame up permanently but take the fabric off sometime befor bonfire night so that a firework doesn't damage it, and over winter it gets less use anyway. But now the weather is getting better for outside stuff the trampoline is now in operation again.

Gill had got better enough to make pizza dough, and as is traditional in our house, the boys made their own pizzas. Gill used some of the tomato/onion/pepper stew I made yesterday as the base part of the pizza toppings, and we opened a jar of olives as a treat. Whilst Gill did this, I planted some tomato seeds in a seed tray, perhaps a bit late but I've done it in March before and got crops. The pepper seedlings are looking good, the cotyledons (seed leaves) are all open and I hope they won't 'damp off', so I'm watering from below, not overwatering, and using tapwater as it will have fewer fungus spores in it.

I got some Fiddlesticks enquiries, one for a gig in Hull on a Sunday morning. I will be unable to get to it using public transport, so I'm considering going through on the Saturday night in order to do the work. I got a phone call from a friend Linda, who has given me logs on several occasions and I've lent her some gardening books and given her beans. She'd got some willow logs for me, and some laurel branches. I went round and picked them up in the cycle trailer and her husband Duncan brought the rest round in his wheelbarrow.

By now bathwater was hot on the stove and our youngest was the recipient of a hot bath, whilst I washed up. Ah, domestic bliss!

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