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Gentlefolk, I am pleased to announce Tales for the Sugar Cat.

This collection of short, flash, and micro stories span genres and universes, from scifi to fantasy to romance. Most of the stories here were written in response to prompts from an online audience during the eight-hour writing marathon, the Drakeathon.

I entered into this live-writing marathon to raise funds to help defray the costs of my cat Drake's recent diabetes diagnosis, hence the title Tales for the Sugar Cat.

In this book, you can explore new planets and find hidden corners of earth, meet strange creatures and stranger humans; the twenty-five stories here consist of a sampler pack of my fiction.


Donors to the Drakeathon, I will e-mail you a "free" coupon for this e-book within the next 48 hours.

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For the most part, I've been posting over in aldersprig.

Does anyone read this who isn't already reading aldersprig?
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What's Livewriting? 1889ca's webpage describes it as "the act of writing a book or story within a set timeframe, with live updates for an audience that also participates by suggesting directions the story might go."

What's Flash/Microfiction? Flash fiction is generally defined as short-short stories, under 3000, 1500, or 1000 words. Microfiction is generally short, complete stories under 500 words.

What's the Drakeathon? The Drakeathon will be two 4-hour sessions in which I ask you, the audience, to prompt me to write short fiction. I'll ask for audience participation as I write, and post the stories as I complete them.

But,since this is an 'thon, I'm trying to earn a little money, too (in this case, for Drake, the above-pictured kitty, who has recently been diagnosed with diabetes). At least the first three prompters each hour will have 50-word microfics written off their prompts, but those who sponsor the 'thon will get more bang: each $5 sponsorship will get 300 words, up to a 3000-word story (anything over 1000 words will be completed in the weeks immediately following the 'thon).

Note: I'm still ironing out details. But!

As sponsorship goals are met, those who have donated will get bigger perks:

If I reach $20, I get a pizza
If I reach $75, everyone who donates will get a printed-and-snailmailed or pdf-and-e-mailed prettified version of the story from their prompt
If I reach $150, there will be an e-book of the stories from this anthology; sponsors will get a free copy
If I reach $225, the e-book will include a never-before-seen short story of 1500-3000 words written for this anthology
If I reach $300, there will be a print book, and donors will receive a discount on said book.
If I reach $375, the e- and print book will have professional art for the covers & a second new short story.

TL:DR Summary: Throw prompts at me, get microfics.
Throw money and prompts at me, get longer fics.
If enough money is thrown at me, there will be shinies



(apologies to Eseme, Ysabet, and anyone else who will get this 3-4 times in their f-list)

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First snow of the season!

This was a pretty awesome weekend. Friday, Mom took me shopping - I fit in a size 10 now! I haven't worn size 10 pants since the late 90's! *dance* Also, I got the most awesome parka! (I'm pretty excited, can you tell?)

Saturday, we went to a couple wineries on Seneca Lake - Earle Estates Meadery (jilliko, netbard, you should check this place out. Honey Mead!) We bought the Pear Mead, and also enjoyed the "Strawberry Shadows" and "Black Jewel."

We liked Lakewood Vineyards, too - pics to follow, probably - and bought their 2008 Riesling.

Then we stopped at Wager's Cider Mill in Penn Yann, bought cider, cheese, donuts, and apples (nom!).

Then it was off to Grime's Glen in Naples. It was a brisk day, but not too cold for the hike. We got about an hour out (pics to follow) when I slipped on a patch of slippery rock and went from wet-feet to wet-to-the-hips. My darling husband saved me from wet-to-shoulders by grabbing the handle of the Camelback (Yay).

All it all, it was a lovely weekend, capped by a mellow, write-a-lot Sunday. Yay!

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Long time no post (here, at least; more active in aldersprig lately).

It's a lovely autumn, and I'm enjoying the heck out of it. Yesterday, we went to a couple wineries on Seneca Lake (there's about a zillion, but we only stopped at two): Penugin Bay and Red Newt. Lovely drive, lovely wines.

We went for a minihike in Finger Lakes National Forest (our new favorite place) afterward, and then home a random-craving dinner of sketti & meatballs.

Since January, I've lost 42.4 lbs. Woo! 7.6 to my smallest goal to go!

Writing happens, quite a bit. Alabacon happened, and rocks. Work happens.

What happens in your sandbox?

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When I started to take the weight of, somewhere - can't find it now - alderfather commented that my face had looked like my mother's at some point, his at some point, and then my aunt's (I have his nose, btw); he was curious to see who I'd look like as I lost weight.

(Found it: "Cheekbones. I'll remind you that at one time you looked like my sister and another you looked like me as you were growing up. Who will you be this time?")

Looking in the mirror this morning, I found the answer: Lyn. I look like Lyn.

This makes me very happy.

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Back when the Dragon & I got married, there were a set of commercials out where people went around telling complete strangers "I just saved a bunch of money on my car insurance."

I was like that about our impending marriage: I was working at Social Services, and I told complete strangers in the elevator "I'm getting married on Friday!"

I'm like that about weight loss. I told the lady at the Jo-Ann's counter yesterday "I've lost 30 pounds! (32, but who's counting?) I told the poor boy at Gap who just wanted to sell me some shorts. I told the bank teller (to be fair, she at least knows me by name).

I've lost 32 lbs! Yay! Halfway there!

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Wonderfully mellow Saturday - cleaned some house, wrote a little story and a little bonus story, played in the garden, hung out with Sam, made chili, went out for ice cream, and took a hike down Taugannock Creek.

Sunday we went to the nearby flea market, and got way to much cool stuff for $10. Yay! (including a steampunk prop. Also doubles as a stabbing instrument). Drove to Rochester, did some shopping, hung out with friends, and drove home.

How are there ALWAYS Amish in my way driving home now? It was quarter to midnight!

Good weekend. :-) How about you?

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Okay, after a lot of mental flailing about, I'm going to try to go about this gender-role discussion in a more thought-out manner.

So Step One is going to be attempting to define where and what gender roles are.

What traits are generally considered manly? Feminine? Where do they originate from? What things that we think of that was come from the 1890's dissection of gender, which from the earlier Puritan from god to the priest to the father to the family model, which from practical concerns from pre-industrial times, which hard-wired as survival traits?

It's early, so I'm just going to leave that there with the questions for the time being.

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Recent conversations in LJ, as well as a conversation with eseme on this sweater and thoughts on my baby boy cousin and my upcoming baby-mystery-gender cousin have me thinking about children and gender.

My dad likes to joke about the wooden truck he gave me as a little girl. Nothing wrong with it, and I had plenty of dolls too. I'm always a little mystified about how I can be as girly as I am, in all the foofy negative sterotypes, and yet equally masculine in just-as-unhelpful ways (I could go on about this one for hours. Maybe later).

Where I'm going today is baby gifts. Read more...Collapse )

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Sunday, Sam & I went hiking with elasmo, ellatoulouse, xenonhunter and Dan-dan, down at Robert Treman State Park. It's a lovely park, a long (4.5 mile round trip, uphill both ways) hike, and well worth it. I'm discovering the best part of hiking like that is that it combines three of my favorite things - water/the outdoors, friends & good company, and exercise (I don't really *like* exercise, but I like the feeling of losing weight, and the good-burn feeling afterwards).

In summer, I love Ithaca. I love its gorges. I love its farm stands. I love being able to drive to new and different craft festivals. It's a wonderful, vibrant place.

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miintikwa is doing a One Card Draw will be at her journal from 1pm to 4pm today! Stop by for a card!
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Warm. Work isn't bad, it's massively air-conditioned to handle the servers. That does mean going outside is its own special hell, though. But it's okay. Heat waves are not, in themselves, horrible, especially not up here in the north.

Diet going well, pants falling off :-)

Ass deep in another sewing commission. Somewhere in there I have to make myself a new chemise for the RenFest WebLit MeetUp (need another two-word mashup there) in August. 'Cause now I fit in E.Mc's red suede corset!! :-)

Life is good.
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I Love haikujaguar's art, I really do!

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Anyone want to get into a discussion on gender roles with me?

http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2010/06/29/doctor-treating-pregnant-women-with-experimental-drug-to-prevent-lesbianism

http://www.thehastingscenter.org/Bioethicsforum/Post.aspx?id=4754&blogid=140

I've never identified as anything but female. I don't have "a lower interest than controls in getting married and performing the traditional child-care/housewife role." As someone once said to me (hi, Liz!), I've always wanted to be "Mrs. Someone." (I like being Mrs. Colbeth better than I thought I'd like being Mrs. Someone ;-)

But it's never been that clear-cut for me, either. There are parts of the male role that are simply more interesting to me than the complimentary female role. And I get overprotective of tiny little women as quickly as the next guy.

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Via robling_t:

It's nice to see that even in these tough economic times, humans can still dream big, man. (Srsly, I so want to do this. But not badly enough to, um, go to Arkansas...)


Yeah, wow, me, too. This is just amazing (but it looks a lot like a castle-building game I was playing maybe 15 years ago...

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Via ysabetwordsmith
newroticgirl is doing a Free Rune Day over on freestuffday. Request a one-rune reading, with or without a specific question. Tipping is welcome but not required.
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Stuff goes, and I'm pretty happy. I posted a couple posts on identity over at aldersprig: "I am," which is general musing both on who I see myself as and who I want to me, and On kitties, and me, and the intersection of such, which is about what it sounds like.

(I'm suffering a little platform disparity, blogging both here and at aldersprig, as me and as Lyn. I'm not sure yet how to resolve this issue, or if it needs resolving).

Weight loss continues apace! I'm now at 40% of my smaller goal and 34% of my larger goal, or, to put it more concretely, I weigh less than I did when Sam & I married nearly-8-years ago! mom & I went shopping yesterday, and I am now a size down in pants (well, shorts & capris, it's summer), and a size down in some shirts (that's trickier). Yay!

I keep writing. This month & next, I'm working not just on the serial projects, but on short stories. I'm going to bite the bullet & start submitting things for publication, either pseudonymousy or in my given name. Wish me luck!

It's getting nicer; we're gardening, we're hiking, and we're enjoying the nice when it comes. Nearly craft fest time!

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Current Mood: chipper chipper

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We've done it again.

I asked landlady for a little ground for a couple tomatoes, and she gave us a patch of dirt the size of a queen-sized bed.

We've gotten a pitchfork, a rake, and a funny-looking tool (the last two free), manure, peat moss, and weedcloth.

We've gotten 2 tomato plants, 4 different kinds of pepper plant, strawberries, parsley, and purple basil. I can't find my turnip green seeds, though. :-/

We've turned over the ground, dug out maybe half of the rocks, turned in the peat & the manure, and covered it with ground cloth. Tomorrow, we'll plant the plants.

Yay!

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....the old-school Gangrel have taken over the Olympic opening ceremonies.

Wow.
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Happy 2010, Everyone!

This will be a good year.

More on resolutions when I actually wake up.
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We are moved in. Our new place is very quiet. I love it.

We'll have interwebs at home by Friday
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There's vodka in my new freezer, must mean we're on the way to moving in.

Of course, it's the _only_ thing in the new fridge right now... but we're getting there.

(there's also mac n' cheese on the counter and vinegar in the cupboard. Must count for something).
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I'm absolutely serious when I say that no-one reading this needs to buy me/us presents this year. We've had two lean giving years and I feel as if I already owe y'all two back years of gifts already. No more!

If you feel as if you must, the list is short this year. We're moving (Saturday), and could use gift certificates to Home Depot and/or Target.

If you like the material things (gift certificates aren't so much fun to wrap, I know), there's this and all the other tote bags from one of my favorite webserials, Strange Little Band - I could always use another bag, and it helps out a friend that way, too :-)

Edit: or this T-shirt from Peacock King. (If you're not reading these two webserials, you should at the very least give them a look!)

Also... should you want gifts... it helps to tell me where your list is posted.

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I will try to be good about thankfulness soon. For brief, recently I have had great cause to be thankful for:

My mother, and the wonder of comforting family ritual that is shopping

The marvelously nice people in Romulus, NY, including their EMT, ambulance, and police. Oh, and the hunters.

Modern car safety.

The fact that Geico is a far better car insurance company than they're given credit for.

Enterprise Rent-a-Car.

My wonderful husband, who, 13 years ago this past Saturday and countless times since then has decided I'm worth his time.

The new lease and apartment key sitting on said husband's desk.

Absolutely wonderful friends on the inter-tubes and IRL.

And my father, who knows how to find the humour in any situation. Although the EMT's look at you funny when you tell them "it was a short car to start with... now it's a bit shorter."

Venison.

Thank you.
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We're moving Saturday, and that means a lack of Lissa for about a week.

Don't miss me too badly.

Urm... when I have a new number, should you want it, you should e-mail me for that & the snailly mail thing.
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On the 15th, I was thankful for music. It's hard to explain.. but music is a driving force in my life, and keeps me sane(r).

All God's creatures have a place in the choir,
Some sing low, some sing higher,
Some sing out loud on the telephone wire,
Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got now!

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On the 12th, 13th, and 14th, I was thankful for modern technology, medicine, and science. My life would be much harder and less pleasant if it weren't for those things.

Sometimes I get caught up, being an avid sci-fi reader, on how far we haven't come, and forget to look at how far we've already gotten. Here's to hoping things keep improving!

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Today, I am thankful for every man and woman who has fought in the U.S. Military.

Because of all of you, this country remains free and safe.

Thank you.
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Yesterday, I was thankful for better living through chemistry - the wonders, in specific, of pseudoephedrine and its not-as-cool cousin Phenylephrine.

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This one is hard.

I'm thankful for my grandmother.

She passed away several years ago, but I still feel her presence. She often shows up in my dreams, usually when I'm doing something I shouldn't (which is a weird sort of conscience to have, but I like it).

More than dreams, though, my grandmother left her mark writ large in my mind, and in my life. She paid for me to go to college - that's the big one, financially, but not the biggest thing emotionally.

My grandmother was, her whole life, a strong, capable, pragmatic, and compassionate woman, the matriarch of our family and its guiding light. I have endeavored to be like her. I will always endeavor to be like her.

I am immensely grateful that I had her for a grandmother.

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Today, I am thankful for my parents. Okay, I'm always thankful for my parents, but today I'll write on it.

I'm grateful that I have loving, caring parents who did their best to raise me to be a healthy, happy, thoughtful, responsible adult. I'm glad that they're still a part of my life. I'm stupidly grateful that they still help me out when I need it. :-)

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It goes without saying that I am thankful for my friends, but that doesn't mean I shouldn't say it.

Today, I am thankful for my chosen family, my kin, my dear loved ones, my friends. I'm thankful for those of you I've known for years and years, who have done silly things like drive 8 hours in a weekend so that I could go to a LARP (or more than that just to visit over a holiday weekend, who have been there at midnight when I called crying.

I'm thankful for the online presence that keeps me sane. I'm thankful for keeping me grounded. I'm thankful for calling me on my bullshit... and I'm thankful for needing me just a little.

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Today, I am grateful for my happy little car, and immensely thankful for my parents' help with the down payment, that allowed us to actually get a loan this time.

As per yesterday, I'm going to list a thing a day, from now through Thanksgiving, for which I'm thankful.

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I'm not known for being able to stick with something regularly, but I'll try to do this one.

Rather than a single list, I'm going to list a thing a day, from now through Thanksgiving, for which I'm thankful.


Today, I'm thankful for the sun warm on my face.

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May Update
April Update

June has come and gone. I bought a lot of dirt, but I really think I'm done buying dirt. I also have the consolation that, since most of my garden is in pails that have handles and lids, I can easily move & reuse this dirt next year.

My garden, though it has netted no actual harvest yet, is getting hella big.
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This month, we bought a mint plant, a half-dozen each parsley and basil (1/2 to go in Eugene's garden), and chives, rounding out our herbs. I'm still giving away a couple of the tomatoes and a pepper, so the garden will shrink a little, but I've still got quite a few plants! Come August and September, I believe we will be swimming in tomatoes.

Dirt this month was about $35, plants were about $10.

Guesstimating $1 of electricity spent on my grow lamp for each month, $5.00 on spent on seeds, $17.00 on plants and $44.56 on dirt (and a time-release fertilizer), I've spent $69.56 so far. And I think the spending is done! (Cross fingers).

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This month, I spent a lot of time moving things into bigger containers, which took a lot of dirt. I spent an additional $3.33 on potting soil (cheap potting soil; I won't go that cheap again) and bought two plants, not shown: a variegated sage and a lemon balm.

Everything is getting big, which makes me happy.

Guesstimating $1 of electricity spent on my grow lamp for each month, $5.00 on spent on seeds, $7.00 on plants and $14.56 on dirt, I've spent $29.56 so far. I'll have to take into account somehow that a portion of this will also support Eugene's garden.

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After the Get Rich Slowly Garden Project, I've decided to keep track of how much I spend on my wee little apartment patio garden.

April was mostly spent upplanting seedlings into bigger containers as they outgrew the Chinese take-out trays.

(Does anyone want some Roma tomato seedlings? A spaghetti squash plant? jalapeno pepper seedlings? okra?)

Speaking of okra, I bought a packet of okra seeds on whim. I also (It was May, but if I wait, I'll forget) bought $3.23 of humus/manure mix. Sunday, I repotted my biggest tomato seedling into a homemade kitty-litter pail self-watering planter, and the biggest spaghetti squash seedling into the leftover kitty-litter pail.

Guesstimating $1 of electricity spent on my grow lamp for each month, $5.00 on spent on seeds and $11.23 on dirt, I've spent $18.23 so far and netted nothing but entertainment.

Edited to add: Yes. To be honest, I'm doing this for the good feelings it generates. Please don't read the above comment to think I'm disappointed in the lack of yield in my garden. I's the 6th of May! I don't expect there to be anything in my garden yet but the fun of digging in the dirt! But please note that this set of posts is about the financial costs and gains of the garden, not the spiritual and emotional well-being it generates in me. :-P

See also this post.

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After the Get Rich Slowly Garden Project, I've decided to keep track of how much I spend on my wee little apartment patio garden.

In March, I planted some seeds in Chinese take-out containers, adding some coffee grounds to the soil, as I've tended to do as a sort of quickie nitrogen-rich composting.

I freecycled myself some kitty litter pails for later use as planters, and, when and keeblerx and I visited alderfather, Mom, and Wyatt, I drilled the appropriate holes to use two pair of them as self-watering planters for the tomatoes. I also freecycled myself
a whole mess of seeds.

The freecycled seeds aren't doing so hot in terms of germination rate, but the ones I'd saved from a couple years ago (Roma tomatoes, jalapenos, and habanero peppers) are coming up pretty rapidly, as are the basil & parsley seeds I bought this year. I was a little worried about the habeneros, actually, as they were taking their time, but I have 5 tiny seedlings now, so I'm happy.

After thinning, I have 14 tomato seedlings, 16-ish jalapenos, and 5 habanero plants, a mess of basil and parsley, and two spaghetti squash plants, one a little more enthusiastic than the other. The tomatillas and Anaheim chilies for which eseme brought me the seeds aren't up yet, but I only planted those his past week.

I'm very excited! Now if only it would warm up...

Guesstimating $1 of electricity spent on my grow lamp for the month of March, and $3.50 on spent on seeds and $8.00 on dirt, I've spent $12.50 so far and netted nothing but entertainment.

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You finally have an excuse to use it—what userpic do you not get to use very often but can't delete because it's just that awesome?


I've got a few, but I'll use this one - it's a photo of qlipoth's that I just loved enough to turn it into an icon. But, realistically, once my love life... ahem... stabilized... three years ago, I had less need for an icon I used primarily for "broken love."

I don't get to use my "Terminator" icon much, either... but I'm not sure anyone out there is watching Terminator anymore.

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.Collapse )

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Holy shit it's twelve out. Fahrenheit.

I thought it was supposed to be getting nicer out?

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Two grammar questions

"She had no sooner thought it then/than her hand was..."

and

How the hell do you triple-nest quotes?
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Wow.

I just got over 70 seed packets via freecycle.

I'm gonna need a bigger patio...

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Lame!

LAME!


LAME!


Did I mention... FUCKING Lame?

And again.

I'm rather... outraged.
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Aaah!


Aaaah!


Aaaaaaah!


Where'd Starbuck go?!


Aaah!
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"Hey, I really hate to rush you, but you are keeping two civilizations waiting!"
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Well, recipe salsa, actually.

From the page that did the cost-return analysis of gardening, getrichslowly.org, come two recipes I don't want to forget for later

canned salsa & Fresh red table salsa

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I love that my preparations for gardening include bringing home Styrofoam peanuts and coffee grounds from work & frecycling kitty litter pails (in order, in lieu of rocks, as fertilizer/soil conditioner, and as planters (because the litter our cats use comes in bags)).

Oh, and poking holes in Chinese take-out containers (the plastic ones, not the paper ones).

I have planted my first seeds, leftovers, for the most part, from past years, so I overplanted something between 4 to 1 and 12 to 1. Warming on the second heater are three plastic containers with germinating (I hope) seeds for Roma tomatoes, jalapeño & habanero peppers, three kinds of basil (a pack containing lemon & lime basil, and then a "spicy globe" basil) and parsley (Italian flat-leaf) - things we know from past experience that we will use. I'm pretty excited... yippy, actually. Very bouncy over three pins of wet dirt and coffee grounds.

:-)

Now all we need to do is find the lamp portion of our grow-light rig.

Last year, I found this site, "How much does a garden really save." I'm contemplating doing the same thing for my mini-garden this year.

So far, loosely rounding, I've spent $3.50 on seeds and $8.00 on dirt.

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(x-posted to apartmentgarden)

Now this is cool...

I wonder if the hungry want hot peppers...

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Lissa
Name: Lissa
June 2011
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