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Friday, September 30, 2011

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Spent a couple of busy days.

Yesterday was my highlight .. Lee Valley was starting day one of the 3 day clearance sale.  So I was out there, bright and early, #2 at the door.  Open. Open. Open.   Soon there were about 10 people, all anxiously awaiting the front doors of the store to open.

Soon enough, the doors were opened and we were guided to the side seminar room (which I hadn’t noticed previously).

Every one was polite . .no pushing or shoving.   Each person was intent on acquiring some woodworking or gardening treasure.

Well, I did well.   Had lots of fun, actually.   And all my purchases were good ones.  There were the tiny LED lights for use in places like dresser drawers, cupboards, that could be attached with adhesive (attached) onto surfaces .. all ready to light up when the drawer, or whatever, was opened.

Then there is the mini folding shovel, in carrying bag .. good for digging up donated plants.    This will go in my purse.  And the long-handled weeder which resembles a golf putter … and I’ve found that this works very well in smoothing freshly installed soil .. as well as superb weeding.

And a stone slinger (what a great price, $5) … also very useful for picking fruit high on a tree.  It works.  I picked some apples today with it.   And I know that it would have been very useful for picking the ripe plums!

Also, the large, aluminum garden scoop … I’ve been using this today, digging out the garden edges around the fence.  Very sturdy item and if it ever wears out, I will have no hesitation at purchasing another one!

There were other long-handled weeding tools available, but, really, I have enough.

The brass watering nozzle set, complete with 4 different heads that simply pop into the nozzle.   Each have adjustable sprays and each is unique.   I couldn’t find it in the catalogue, but this purchase is worth its weight in gold!

The tin watering can is useful and decorative with its copper coloured sprinkler head.

A set of 3 galvanized steel containers, small, medium and large .. all set to hang on a hook, each joined by a chainwork system .. perfect for gardening organization.  This was included with an item that defied description, I think it was a prototype submitted to the store.   There were two round, handled pots, each with circular cutouts along their sides and bottom, with each having a circular grid, separate, to be placed on top.  I’ll be sending pics to Lee Valley, to see what the purpose is .. but for now, they are absolutely perfect for holding my garlic cloves .. soon to be planted!

Also, a set of 3 galvanized steel scones, small, medium and large.  I plan to install these in my gardening room .. perfect for holding .. something!

A unique suede type of carpenter’s hold-all.   I’d been looking at zipped bags, displayed on a table .. playing around with the idea of … one for clippers, one for weeders .. when someone placed this item tantalizingly close to me.   So, I picked it up.   Hmm .. very sturdy, well made.   4 levels of open pocket holders.   Sections for pencils or thin tools.  Clips.  A holder for a coffee cup .. or?  I’ll have to take a pic of this.

So yesterday afternoon, out in the full sunshine, I emptied my garden tote and started organizing my garden tools.  The top pocket of this tough organizer was perfect for all my clippers.  Gosh, I sure have a lot.

I continued on .. filling in the empty pockets of the organizer.   Still room for a few more items.   Very tidy.   There is a sturdy loop at the top and I’m getting used to just picking up this treasure and moving it about the yard, as I work.   Tools well-organized.   A place for everything.

Yes, this had been a very satisfying shopping spree at my first ever Lee Valley Clearance.

So … then I did lots of digging in the yard, finally finished sifting the soil from the uplifted sod sections removed from the backyard sidewalk.

This resulted in 5 Rubbermaid containers full of the fine soil .. and I used this to fill in some low spots on the yard.  Amazing the amount of soil that is sorted from the grassy bits.    Talk about recycling in the garden!

This type of work is strenuous and at the same time, rather relaxing.  And therapeutic.

I found myself lost in thought .. mindlessly emptying container after container of sod & soil onto the surface of my soil sifter station.     Hours of tapping away at the clay soil with one of my garden hand tools, breaking the soil into chunks of manageable grassy soil mixture.   The soil sifting down through the mesh into containers on the tarp.

Repeat and repeat till all the containers and also the wheelbarrow were sorted.   Took 5 containers of grassy/weed sections out to the front, to be taken to the local compost yard.   Way too much for our garden composter.

Next, I carried the containers of soil around the yard … emptying them onto low spots in the yard.   Looking good.

Still thinking about how to go about changing the design of the back part of the yard.   I know by experience that if an idea doesn’t spring forth right away … then just working away on other projects somehow gets my subconscious free rein to think about creative ideas.   They will pop up when ready.  This method has worked well for the rest of the yard …. and I’m always amazed with the results.  I believe that I have an inner artiste!

Took ample time to relax and observe the feathered activity in the yard.     Looked up … saw several crows flying high and in the midst of this activity .. noticed a tough little hummingbird stay the distance as the crows flew by.   Then he zoomed away.

Laughed at the antics of the Chickadees … flying from branches to sunflowers to the ornate swirly designs of the garden arbor and then to the suet filled block on an adjacent tree.

The sparrows were having fun .. .flying everywhere .. including lining up on the branch holding the suet block.  Then playing around on the miracle mulch that is currently resting on a tarp .. awaiting my decision on where to shovel this lovely product.

Didn’t see the woodpecker today, but then I might have missed it .. having gone shopping a little today.

It’s been a great few days.  Now .. the weekend approaches.

And I do need to decide which green tomato/tomatillo  chutney to make!  The tomatoes are fading fast and I need a rainy day to get me going.

That and some canned apple recipes ….. the plums are frozen and can wait for another week or so.  Then there will be room in the freezer, once these many bags of frozen plums are used up.  Yum, plum butter .. chutney .. delicious any time of the year.  But especially good in the winter .. reminder of the (short) hot summer.

It’s been a day … or two, actually.

🙂

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