August 10, 2009

Gardening without a garden

baby tomato

This year, I got a pretty large plant pot, a bag of gardening soil, and a cherry tomato seedling from nearby home center. Later, I got a bag of fertilizer which says "for tomatoes", too.

Today, I harvested eight tomatoes as the last crop and cut down all the vines, packed them in a plastic bag and put out as garbage. The tree was tired and lost almost all the leaves. I could have saved several green fruits still on the vines by waiting a week or so more, but Typhoon No. 9 (No, our lovely Meteorological Agency doesn't name them. We just give them numbers. An international meeting give them Asian names, but we, ordinary Japanese never recognize a typhoon with name.) was coming closer - or so I figured that I didn't want to take a risk.
I explained my daughter that I was going to cut down the tomato tree while she was helping me harvesting. "No, I don't wanna say good-bye." "But, look, the leaves are almost gone. It's about time, honey."
She went inside. I was sure she was watching me using my pruning scissors, and lost her interest after a few minutes.

It's OK. What I have done today was an act of killing. It's not something she has to learn to do it herself yet.

We live in an apartment in the city. It's not completely unaffordable, but very expensive to have a "real" garden in my neighborhood. I dream of having apple trees or citrus trees that I can cook with their fruits in my own backyard. I set a table under the tree, sit and knit and sip iced tea from a tall glass.... Just a dream. Instead, I spread a rug on the veranda/balcony/whatever the word that describes my little outside space which hold clothesline and plant pots, sip lukewarm coffee from my mug. Sometimes I knit.
And think of the next plant or seed I get from the home center.

This summer, I got 209 cherry tomatoes from my tree. And thankfully killed it. The typhoon took the eastern-most course that we didn't have any strong wind. Just rain.

August 03, 2009


Now the rainy season is officially over. Summer. Is. Here.

My daughter and I spent 6 days at my husband's parents'. We had really good time. My husband (who couldn't make it this time due to business schedule) laughs at me, saying "you're more relaxed there than at your mom's!" He's got a point. At my mother's, I am supposed to take care of her. At in-law's, I can be one of mom-in-law's "kids to take care of," just one of helpers. At the age of 40, I'm praised when I do dishes, and I really feel good about it.

As a 40-yr old not a 5-yr old, though, I take pictures like this;
Garbera daisy?

Rose Mallow
for color inspirations.

On this trip, I took only Poseidon socks and some leftover organic cotton yarns from baby projects with me. At the bookstore where my daughter picked up a workbook about numbers (my sister in law bought it for her), I found a book about amigurumi deserts&cakes. The "Taiyaki" (red bean paste filled pancake shaped like a fish) pattern is superb. I just couldn't NOT making one like "white taiyaki" which is becoming popular recently.
white "taiyaki"
Mom-in-law liked it very much, so, naturally, it became hers. I hope it's good for her. At least, it's organic.

My daughter enjoyed VERY much staying at Gramma's. She played outside every day, played the piano her daddy first played 30 years ago, won climbing up on every lap but her great-gramma (who's 94 and has thinner thigh than my daughter) and her oldest cousin (who's 14 and a boy... he's a nice boy but, ohh, touchy, touchy age!) there. She watched all the video games her cousins play (which is surprisingly small part of their days). She helped her gramma washing all the plastic trays (in which sashimi came) for recycle. She enjoyed every minute of our stay, and at the same time, couldn't wait to go back home to see Daddy.

My husband's "welcome back home" went straight to our stomach;
Hubby's Chinese dinner
(You see my daughter's plate is almost empty?)
Hubby's Angel food cake
Yes, my daughter thinks it's very nice but somewhat takes it for granted that her dad bakes. Angel food cake from scratch.

How much spoiled are we?