July 26, 2009 :: Urban Corn

I've apparently broken some cardinal law of nature that says that you cannot grow good-producing corn in a less than 10'x10' plot, and certainly not in an urban area where pigeons and squirrels and theiving neighbors will surely decimate your crop yield.

The stats: 5' or so by 6' or so of Silver Queen corn, planted in wonky rows, staggered in three plantings, has so far, yielded 5 huge ears of corn, and there's 20 more on the stalks ripening. Locality: Fulton County, City of Atlanta, the double-whammy of property tax brackets in Atlanta.




July 25, 2009 :: Ten 'til

Still figuring out this posting-via-iPhone thing. Bear with me.



July 13, 2009 :: All You Need*

I want flowing dresses and the easiest summer beauty, full of sunlight, with tousled hair and gossamer jewelry. I want good walking shoes, red with a buckle. I want smoky green tea kissed with honey. I want fiction to pour from my fingertips--just the right words, just the right story. I want cool sheets in raging air conditioning, a warm cat snuggling the small of my back. I want tomato-avocado sandwiches. I want a clean house, a bright house, an organized house. I want checkerboard rugs and claw foot tubs, back-deck awnings and grilled salmon on the Weber. I want more time in the middle of the day to sit and read. I want caramel ice cream and a Law & Order marathon. I want, sometimes, a new town and another house, somewhere breezy and northern or western, where artists have reclaimed a sad neighborhood; where Blake packs out clubs and I write for companies from our kitchen table and visit flea markets in the afternoons when my work is done.

That's what I want. But I have what I need and more. And for that, I'm feeling particularly lucky today.

*Phrase painted on the CSX railyard wall near our house, on my walk home from the train. Now painted OVER in putrid green, like every other inch of the wall, by overzealous neighbors who don't see any value in public art, even though they've all chosen to live in an historic, artistic, intentionally quirky neighborhood. There's something rotten about that, and it bothers me every day.



July 11, 2009 :: Knee-high by the Fourth of July (and then some)

Growth abounds at the little house this spring/summer. Wow. It is full-on summer now, isn't it? Boy. It's been a while since I've been here.

Things have been cruising along this year it seems, and I've been caught off-guard by the passage of time. I planted seeds some three months ago, and above you see a tiny bit of the fruits of this year's planting experiment--front-yard-of-food, Cabbagetown. This morning I checked the yard and found that the corn was somewhere near ready (I think...I'm going to have to google to find out for sure), that someone may have swiped our latest batch of ripe tomatoes, right off the vines (I hope it was a legitimately hungry person and not a neighbor), and that our herbs are out. of. control. Soon, we'll have squash and pumpkins, really late-season watermelon and eggplant, too. I couldn't be happier (exepct for the thievery). I'm already planning for next year.

We're also planning some other big changes around here. It's still the year of the house. It may be the two-years-of-the-house, actually, given the slow growth of our budget for such things and my inability to blog about them, but we'll get a good chunk done very soon. I feel productive (if not a little poorer) having planned out such serious sawing and hammering. We're all permitted and ready to go. I'm nervous, but excited.

I want to try and document the process, starting with our beginning-point, rotted soffits, mossy roof, tattered paint and all. I love my house. I can't wait to love it even more.

We'll replace most of the exterior trim (it's rotted through), add gutters (why were there none in such critical places? seriously problematic), trim trees, power-wash the house, and then, the most exciting part....paint the whole thing a gorgeous blue. With purple-black shutters and window trim, a red-red front door and humungous western house numbers.

Some inspiration. Color on top, stenciled flooring in the middle for the porch, and an attempt to channel a little Margaret Killgallen for the house numbers.

I can't wait to get started.