Raspberry joy!

Since my next-door neighbor passed away (I know; this is three in four months and they’re dropping around me like flies), his wife has asked me to help keep his raspberry patch picked. It’s about 5’x18′ or 20′ or so, and didn’t get trimmed last year, so it’s pretty overgrown and right now packed solid with raspberries. (She suggested I take a few starts, and after thinking it over, I might put some in the back. They’re thornless, taste great, and would at least be competition for the damned blackberries.)

I went out this morning after a reconnoiter yesterday and spent about 90 minutes picking berries. Plenty of them will get shared, but here’s what I got:

Roughly eight pints of berries, not counting the stowaway spiders and aphids you can’t get rid of no matter what.

After more time and effort, those turned into these, which will be a delight come wintertime:

At least, the ones that don’t get shared will be a winter lifesaver.

And, since it’s FINALLY been five days since it rained, meaning I could finish off the back deck, the railings got scraped and stained today (and I put on a second coat of stain on some of the boards, partly as an experiment: I don’t think this stuff’s intended for our climate and “don’t put on a second coat” invariably means “sand and put on another coat next spring,” so I put a second coat on some boards that were already not beading well just to see what happens. After they dry. Which will take a day or two. But it’s supposed to be dry and clear for several days, so I should be OK. Anyway, this isn’t dramatic or interesting except that I’m DONE WITH THE DAMNED THING.

I don’t know if this will show up, but for no apparent reason the system tells me this file–no larger than the other two–is too big to load, so I’ll try schlurping it from Ravelry. Can you see my eyes rolling? Argh.

SO. Since the next few days are supposed to be dry and sunny (or mostly so), tomorrow I hit the walk-thru garage door and start tearing paint off, injecting wood stabilizer, and whatever else I can do to delay having to replace the door frame (which I can’t afford). When the siding contractor put siding up there, he didn’t even bother to caulk down the left-hand side of the door–something I didn’t notice until duh, the door frame started rotting. That will be so much fun! I can hardly effing wait.

One of my kind-hearted neighbors, knowing I can no longer lay down anywhere near a decent bead of caulk (you should see it; it makes a two-year-old’s scribble look like da Vinci) has offered to run caulk down that side when I’m finished. I really appreciate that. (No relation, but Snaotheus–you know that motion light you put up? The one by the walk-thru door? It’s suddenly stopped working. I plugged/unplugged and it didn’t seem to matter, so maybe it needs a new one? The higher up one desperately needs re-aiming, too.)

Then… comes yet another bout of weed-pulling (ask me about the tree-root radishes) and still trying to figure out some way to get to the big-leaf maple saplings and cut them down before they become 300′ trees that destabilize the Cliff of Doom. NO idea how I can do that. None at all.

I hate this house crap. I hate it with a green and burning passion.

Posted by wordsmith

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