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Hey all.I'm John,from N.J., and new to the forum...or at least to posting in the forum.Not single,married and father of four.New to permaculture but becoming OCD with it as with anything else I find interesting in life.I've always been in to gardening but more so now with life being more of a "mess" every day and the economy and world going to hell. I went from one garden and 2 more in my aquaponics set up to putting in 4 more raised beds and 2 more row gardens this year.I started 98% of my stuff from heirloom/organic seed but did buy a few smaller plants to help move things along since I was late in my seed starting after I decided to add so many more gardens.I live along a natural brook but it is definitely polluted(shocking ain't it?) but I have been looking at making a shallow well to help with the water bill. side note: 2 things I can't stand the thought of lately is to have to actually buy dirt or water. That's pretty sad when you think of it. Luckily I have a truck and get dirt "cheap". In any case, I seen a bunch of videos on youtube dealing with shallow wells and since I have the polluted creek near by I figured I wouldn't have to dig so deep to find that filtered out water in the ground. My plan is to only go maybe 16 ft' down and put a hand pump well on it for the gardens,lawn,compost piles,koi pond etc. Just hope the earth filtered it well. I would say, 'i"m not drinking it' but then I may as well say,'I'm not drinking it,only eating it"
considering plants will grow from it,fish and aquaponics etc may as well say I'm eating it.Then again,same scenario with grey water no?
On another note~ I too, am looking to move so I do not want to dump any more money into this house/land than I can immediately benefit from.My plan is to head to P.A. within a year or two so I'm just experimenting and learning at this stage for a better success rate and future once I get out of this state or...into a house I plan to live in for the rest of my days and can pass to my children one day.
On another note to Ken, the farm with 3 oaks is just that..."Three Oaks Farm" or is it 2 now that one fell on the house? "Two Oaks farm" sounds pretty cool also. Just throwing it out there.
 
Posts: 283
Location: SW Michigan
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Hello, wow where is everyone?
 
Daniel Morse
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Howdy folks.
 
Posts: 56
Location: SW Virginia Mountains, USA
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Too bad this thread died. I found it interesting and amusing, a slight glimpse into the life of others... esp. Ken with details of work jobs and land quests.
 
Daniel Morse
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I think it is the time of year, we are all so busy
 
Daniel Morse
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Today i am on the way to Chicago. I am in a movie that is filming in January. I am also in a play called "Pebbles in the Stream." At our local play house. Busy.
 
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Hey all. Missed this thread with so much to read on this site. It is nice to meet people who think outside of the box.
 
steward
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Don't ever give up on Permies.com.
Some things just need the right season. Others just need time to grow.
 
Ken Peavey
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Busy.

The latest job is a couple miles of 50 year old concrete drainage ditch. The job is broken up into a couple hundred feet at a time with the roads windiing through the plant. Put up a coffer at the high end, another at the low end, add a pump to bypass the work area, another to pump out the work area. Jackhammers and shovels to tear out the old busted ruins. Build forms for shotcrete. Having a problem with frequent rain stopping the job or flooding the worksite, so we take a break in the tool trailer or head home for a few hours. My schedule has been all over the place.

Bull
Bull is smelly, fat and happy. The return of the rains have given him plenty to eat. Some of the clover is coming up where I sowed seed last spring. A family up the street and around the corner has taken a fancy too him, has stopped in to visit. They are quite impressed with the breed, Lowline Black Angus, that they have announced their intention to start a small herd of their own with a couple of cows. I informed bull about the news and he is looking forward to it. The folks stopped by to give me an 8x 10 glossy...added below.

Garden
Regular moisture is producing results. Everything is 3' high. I've been able to harvest some seed, but most of the crops are gone. I'll let Bull in to mow it for me so it will be ready to start over. The basil has performed well, I dehydrated enough to last me until next year. The potatoes came up, then dried up and blew away, but are now reappearing. Bull has learned that potato plants taste awful, so they stand a chance of surviving his assault. Beds which were fully smothered with compost and leaves are overgrown with bermuda grass to the point that the compost and leaves are not visible. Pulling the grass out, the leaves are breaking down nicely with the steady moisture. Where there were no leaves and compost added, the density of the grass is considerably thinner. I'll be spreading plenty of leaves-talking with my neighbor about the fire hazard, she is happy to let me gather all I want from her 3 acres of woods just over the fence. This amounts to 50 tons? All I need, at my fingertips.

Chickens
The flood from Tropical Storm Debbie brought the Suwannee River right up to my door. An inch higher, it would have entered the garage. Normally, the river is a mile away. What this did was drive away the fox that has been raiding my chickens over the past couple of years. No losses for a couple of months is promising.


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Most people just get a dog
 
pollinator
Posts: 330
Location: Clemson, SC ("new" Zone 8a)
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@Ken - My sincere condolences regarding the state of your garden. Bermuda grass is the worst! Unless of course if you want a lawn; then I suppose its just fine. But if you want a garden, its a killer. It is absolutely overgrowing everything I've done. All of my sheet mulch has become a solid, dense mat of Bermuda. Its my fault for both importing commercial compost (read: "115% invasive weed seeds by weight") and dragging my feet when it came to establishing good ground-cover species in the mulched beds. I've just not had the time yet to attend to these beds, and the Bermuda grass has attended to them for me : ( I have planted a few random little herbs, bulbs, etc. here and there. Yeah, right! "Now, they are all Borg" ; )

Short of adopting some "scorched earth" approach and smothering everything, good and bad, before starting over - which at this point is NOT an option I am willing to consider - I have come up with no viable alternative to just spending the hours and pulling and pulling and pulling by hand several times a year. It does work, if you have the stamina. I guess it will keep my head above water for the next several years before I can get ground-covers established and the trees grow to the point of giving me more shade. I hear that is the only foolproof way to subdue Bermuda grass: shade.

I would be very interested to hear about your experiences in this regard (photos would be great!), including any other strategies you might have...

Thanks, and good luck!
 
Rion Mather
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Halloween anyone? Do you celebrate it? I am going as a devil this year.
 
gardener
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Hm, a social lounge that I didn't know existed!
I'll dust off all the furniture, and put a vase of flowers and a plate of cookies out!
(dust dust, fluff, bake bake)
Me and my kitty sit down and see if anyone shows up for cookies.

Oh, who am I fooling? I don't sit still. Drives the cat nuts, she wants to sit with me, I am a busy bouncy thing. Personality clash here.
In the last week I was mostly snowed in, so I only: dehydrated 100 pounds of mushrooms, built a new dehydrator, worked on my house plan stuff, fixed the truck, fixed my laptop, took my iphone apart but had the wrong screen for it so didn't fix it but it does work when I put it back together, did some weird muscle work on myself that is still sore, cleaned up a lot of mess in the house, took apart an appliance to scavenge it for parts, dealt with my chickens, cleaned the coop, dealt with glaze ice (ewww!) and a whole lot of other things. On that list was not "sit with the kitty" which is why she is between me and the laptop right now, since I'm kind of sitting still. It's only going to get worse, I'm building our house this summer! Poor neglected kitty.

I'll bake a pie too... Got pumpkin in the freezer, and cranberries. The other day I made a pie that was pumpkin/coconut cheesecake/cranberry spice. It was excellent! I'll bake one for y'all! I think only used about 2T of honey in the whole thing, I'm not a sugar fan.
 
Posts: 44
Location: Champlain Valley, Vermont
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Thank you, Pearl, for the grand Lounge reopening! Along with pie discussion, may I suggest adding coffee...a Mexican varietal, perhaps (fewer miles of transport compared to most, of course)?
 
Pearl Sutton
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I am not a coffee drinker, I probably have bad taste in coffee. I'll add virtual coffee mugs, but you have to fill them. I'll also provide virtual cream, goat milk, non dairy creamer, and coconut milk as well as sugar, honey, stevia, and agave. You want the pink or yellow packs, you gotta bring your own, I won't be party to that, I have to draw the line somewhere in my virtual catering. :)
I will make some green tea though! And add pretty teacups to the pile of stuff I'm dumping in this lounge.
May have to redecorate in here to match my china!

 
gardener
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Hey, Pearl and Patrick! You never know who you'll run into in the lounge. Pumpkin/coconut cheesecake/cranberry spice pie? Sure! I would never turn that down. Sounds awesome. I love cheesecake! Pearl, how do you have time to bake and bring kitty to the lounge? You have so many projects going on, but I'm glad you're here.

Patrick, hello! Oooo, another coffee lover. I am surely not a coffee connoisseur, I love my simple regular cup-a-joe in the mornings. That's my time to catch up on all the new posts here on Permies that were added overnight.

Happy Valentine's day to you both. It's been a beautiful day here on the east coast, 60° in February is rare. Hubby got off work early and we played outside. Looking for places to move some crocus bulbs and cleaning out the sandbars that have built up in the creek from recent rains. The air outside today smelled wonderful! Spring can't come soon enough.
 
Patrick Stanton
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Karen, greetings! Spring preparations here in Vermont are, of necessity, still theoretical in February, viz., seed catalogues, etc. (High Mowing Seeds is the local favorite)...but I am familiar with this time of year in the Commonwealth, having once lived in Tidewater. As to coffee: have you experimented with Paul's "cowgirl" brewing principle? (Anyone have the link to that thread?)...
 
Pearl Sutton
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Hey Karen! How do I have time to bake? Hm. The way I bake, seriously low sweetener etc, that pie was a high nutrition vegetable dish, not a dessert. Pumpkin that was baked and frozen in chunks, cranberries that were frozen when bought on sale after xmas, coconut milk, brown eggs from my chickens, look close, that's all high nutrient foods! I am the cook here, and when I have dinner going, I'm in the kitchen anyway, I make other things and toss them in the fridge for other meals. I always have stuff precooked and fridged or frozen so I  just grab what ingredients I want for dinner. Makes cooking more efficient time wise, and VERY nutritious! I have severe health issues, have to eat nutrient dense. And I love to make weird stuff, it's fun, I don't have time to do much fun stuff, so I cook weirdness. Mom says she doesn't think she has been served the same food twice since she moved in with me a few years ago.

Good morning Patrick! I just got the High Mowing catalog too, haven't looked at it yet. I was interested in what they had, but their website is too ... I don't know the word... it all sides and opens and dances, and my computer (and all my ad blockers) just wouldn't show it. I'm looking for mass quantities of cheap seeds to use as cover when I disturb soil while building. Everything disturbed will be reseeded immediately. At least clover and whatever flowers I can get to dump in there, hoping for things like basil, mint, and other rowdy reseeders. I high High Mowing's site while looking for basil seed by the pound, and couldn't see if I could afford anything they had or not. Any excess rowdy seeds anyone has, I'd probably love! Looking for human or animal edibles and pollinators that are non-invasive in Missouri (which cuts out some I'd love to use, I'm on a major watershed, and won't contaminate it.) Will not have time to maintain things this year, so they'll make it or not on their own, which is why rowdy is good.

Not sure about winter here, it's odd.  Was iced in last week, today is supposed to get to 76 and possible rain, with snow tonight. definitely different that what I am used to, recently moved here from the desert. The climate change has been one of the main mental hurdles. "Whoa, all this grass grows even if you don't water it!" I'm still trying to get used to it!
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Got a link to the "cowgirl" coffee here. I don't think that's for me. I'm having my one-and-only cup right now. Brewed in my Mr. Coffee pot that is 25 (or more?) years old. It was a member of this household before I got here and is used daily and still brewing. I did break one glass pot though and used a small saucepan in its place for awhile. I guess Paul is a bit harder on coffee pots than I and needs something more durable.

I can't believe this weather! Going to be low 70's today. Avg is like mid 40's, but around here it's never consistent. Got ice and snow forecast for day after tomorrow.

Going to check the rest of my emails and what permie action occurred overnight. Have a great day!
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Good morning Pearl! I just noticed that we posted about the same time.

I wish I was more efficient and had lots pre-made and frozen. I do try to keep a few things ready. Freezer space is an issue here. My husband hunts a lot and the freezer is "his". I have to can all my vegetables to keep them out of his space. But, it all works out. I need to can more combo/heat-n-eat things instead of single ingredient jars.

What have you got planned for today? I've got a few inside chores (one thing to do in the attic, ugh) and a bush outside that I need to prune before hubby butchers it like another one he did.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Currently, until I have a house built, we live in a rental that has no decent space in the kitchen, and my canning stuff is packed still. No space to unpack anything. I have a good freezer, upright, that I moved (I hope it survived!) that is still stored, but the people across the street moved out, and I bought a chest freezer from them for 70.00. It's been worth the space it takes up, the fridge here is small for how I cook. I have a fridge stored too, (again, I hope it survived the move) it's a good size, but we aren't hauling it to the rental so I live with what we have. I want a real house, rentals suck. There's a limit to how much I have energy or give a damn to renovate this place to make it work well for us.

Not sure what today is, need to do some outside stuff, need to do some inside stuff, not bouncing well yet, so I am not sure. Probably outside, since I can today. I'll probably go over to the property and do stuff, and run some errands I have needed to. One of my weirder errands today is to hit the local video store, take them a box, see if I can get them to save me trashed discs, I have been designing light tubes to take light into my basement, have a bunch of weird parameters I want, think I'm going to shingle square box tubes with dead disks to bounce and move light downstairs. I don't want flat reflection like mirrors, but something I can angle slightly, also no broken glass if there's problems. I'm a recycley type, and prefer to use things that are being thrown away (I tell police when I'm dumpster diving and they ask questions "you have heard Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, I'm the Reuse part of that equation!" They learn to leave me alone, I bother no one, and clean up not only my mess, but all around the dumpsters. Never any complaints from anyplace check regularly.) So I need to see if I can find discs in quantity easily. I have weird days  :) Most of my work today is less weird than that  :)

 
Karen Donnachaidh
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That made me remember something I read awhile back. Have you seen anything about these water bottle lights?
 
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                                                                Everyone's Favorite Color is Green

I must have missed this area years ago...not sure how that happened. When I was a kid I found the Seed catalogs that came in the mail and I started dreaming of transforming my parents little country spread into a Garden of Eden. I thought of all the penny items - veggies and fruits and flowers and how they would be beautiful and practical and the kid just believes he could plant these and spend the rest of the time enjoying beautiful flowers and eating perfect apples, grapes and such. Dang this story is already to long so lets skip a few decades,,, .. Looking back at idealist me, I see that I have only changed a little. I still look at the future through rosy lenses sometimes. Reality and making a living and life gets in the way of dreams... I still ran towards a goal of making this country Eden someday, even though I knew that it takes a lot more than pennies and harvesting... Twenty years ago I bought some land in the country and began to plant. I found out quickly that I didn't have time to be gone 6 days a week for work and try to spend a few hours working the dirt each week... Working getting a paycheck each week does have advantages. Money to invest and grow and plan for a day that I would not need a job and could quit the rat race and live the dream -  the country garden - the peace and quiet. -----

I envy you folks that can get a place in the country and work the land day to day with little money and hoeing the dirt and making food for the day. I think of taxes and bills and heating in Winter - water and sun in the Summer- and having enough to get though... I often wonder if you don't have a much happier life than someone like me who has to crunch all the numbers get everything paid first and then be able to live the farm and country life. ...

Several years ago I started crunching numbers as to how much longer I have to work to "afford" to quit regular paycheck and live the dream. I looked at several options and crunched the numbers... and I found out that I was ready. In 2016 I gave notice and ended working for someone else and started working for myself all the time. I could've done it a long time ago.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Good for you! I love a story with a happy ending. It takes number crunching, but it takes a lot more (as you know). Strength, courage, faith, determination...... P.S. I love green!
 
Patrick Stanton
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Pearl, low-cost basil and mint are certainly in the 2018 Burpee catalog ( I had one mailed); but, of course, Burpee is something of a mass company and may not be up to your standards of naturalism, e.g., organic seeds, etc. Any seed trading going on in your town?...
 
ronie dee
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Karen Donnachaidh wrote:Good for you! I love a story with a happy ending. It takes number crunching, but it takes a lot more (as you know). Strength, courage, faith, determination...... P.S. I love green!



Thank You Karen! When asked what is my fav color I always say Green same as everyone else's favorite color.. I guess some could make Gold as a favorite...but if they were stranded in a world with one color - you can't eat gold.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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If you've noticed my signature line says "With forty shades of green, it's hard to be blue." That's because I have seasonal affective disorder  (SAD). I see the winter landscape as if a bomb has dropped usually. I get exceedingly happy at the first peek of new spring growth. 🌱
 
ronie dee
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I did notice that Karen. I like the 40 shades part too. My sis has SAD too.. Does turning on a lot of bright lights help? or maybe having a green house to hang out in on sunny days maybe?   I love the Spring most of all too...that is why I am thinking of selling everything and moving to Lake Chapala Mexico - where it is Spring all year long.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Lights do help, sun helps most (If you can find it.😉) A place where it's spring all year sounds lovely! Too bad my roots are so deeply planted in land and large family here.

Off to work in the attic awhile. Chat with y'all later.
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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I'll  leave you with this.  
 
Pearl Sutton
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In backwards order:

Does turning on a lot of bright lights help? or maybe having a green house to hang out in on sunny days maybe?

It helps me and my mom, yes. I currently have my tomato starting grow light on a timer in the house just to spread light (no starts under it, a few plants near it, reflective surfaces behind it,) and a light pretending it's the sun in an odd place that it's timer makes the sun come up earlier for me every day, and set later (both of these lights turn off during the day unless we override it, which we do on bad days.) I have a greenhouse in my house/property designs that is more a sunspace/hangout place with plants than a greenhouse to start things in, just for this. Depression when's it's grey is a known factor in our lives, so I design solutions, it's my style :)  

low-cost basil and mint are certainly in the 2018 Burpee catalog

I didn't check them, I'm looking for like a pound of seed, not packets. I found some I will order soon, either off a website or off ebay, good choices both ways. Need to check my money at the end of the month before I do. Possible seed swap in town, not sure, someone's trying to arrange it, I have nothing to offer this year though.

In 2016 I gave notice and ended working for someone else and started working for myself all the time. I could've done it a long time ago.

Awesome!! I have been self employed all my life, my brain hates being an employee. these days my body can't handle "going to work" on any kind of schedule so the basement of our house will be work space for me to do stuff I can sell as my health allows me to. Great story, I'm with Karen, I LOVE a happy ending! So glad you are finding your way back to the dirt!

Reality and making a living and life gets in the way of dreams...

Yes, that it does. That's part of why I'm so bouncy these days, my health crashed 20+ years ago, and I spent 17 or more years disabled, dysfunctional, depressed, and frustrated with life. Lot of things changed, and I have a second chance at life, and I'm not going to waste any of it. And I get to do my dream!! Weird things lined up, and I actually COULD make the shift! So here I am, attempting to make my dreams real. So far they are still not here yet, but getting there.

Have you seen anything about these water bottle lights?

Yeah, those are interesting! The ones you normally see, made of plastic, don't last long in bad conditions, but glass does, and the water acts as a light tunnel and diffuser. Have you seen the wine bottles people put in walls? Adding water to them would make them bounce more light (but possibly leak randomly.) I love the way they look.  (from this page EarthshipGlobal ) Oh MY! I love that look! Can't do it on this house, oh well. But if those bottles were filled, it would be even brighter in there. I looked at the expensive light tunnels they sell, and they aren't what I need to start with (indoor light moving, no weather tightness required) and they are way expensive, and the distance I want to run them is more than is standard (going sideways as well as down) and it was just prohibitively expensive. So I'll go for low tech weirdness with CD's, and make it look neat, the tubes will end in the basement at windows to nowhere (probably pictures in the back,) so it will psychologically be more effective than just dumping light out randomly in a room.
 
ronie dee
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Thank you Karen...I love Johnny Cash and have never heard this song before. Have a Bright day.
 
ronie dee
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Thank you, Pearl Sutton, for your story and the kind words... I hope you can get all the light you need. I wish I had the stuff it took to always be self employed - I just worried that I couldn't make the tax bill and heat and... Years ago people lived on faith day to day earth to mouth - I guess it took me longer to get there...  
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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Pearl, that picture is so cool!
Ronie, thank you. 🌄
Off to do more chores. Almost tea time.
 
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New to this, writing to say hello.  Been reading and researching for a while, but felt the urge to "put my self out there" with like minded individuals. Wish me luck!
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steward
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Is that tatsoi  in your veggie bundle?  

Welcome to permies, glad to have you with us.  
 
Pearl Sutton
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Hi Derek!
Lovely bouquet you have there :) Good to meet you, Welcome to Permies, lots to read and learn and share here! You may like it a lot, be warned, it's addictive...
 
Patrick Stanton
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Derek! "Hello" from Burlington...
 
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Should make a Discord server for this. It'd be more interactive.
 
Pearl Sutton
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Garret Wray wrote:Should make a Discord server for this. It'd be more interactive.


Go for it


Karen: I had a dream the other night you might find interesting, you know how dreams are, it was a spring holiday, but not Easter, but something similar, kids were dressed in spring outfits. It seems to have been normal to dye kids hair to match their outfits, at a store I saw a mom and 4 kids, she had done their hair so it looked like variegated spider plants! Looked cute! One of the girls had on a cream and lavender dress, and a lavender hair band making all her variegated hair stand up and she had cream flowers in it.
For some reason your forty shades of green reminds me of that dream... Wonder how she dyed it like that?
 
The first person to drink cow's milk. That started off as a dare from this tiny ad:
permaculture bootcamp - learn permaculture through a little hard work
https://permies.com/wiki/bootcamp
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