Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year. May this be a year of good things for you. I'm posting now because, well, I haven't seen in New Year in an embarrassingly long time. And 3:30pm seems as good a time as any to welcome 2015.

One purpose of the blog has been to keep track of the kids' growth. I took some time this afternoon to show the kids pictures from the past year, and they saw places they wanted to return to (Eli: I want to be back in Korea. RIGHT. NOW) and saw how they'd changed and grown. Actually, I'm not sure if they noticed but I liked the idea of it. 

We've gone almost a year without a car, and it is also heartening to note that we've had a lot of car-free adventures with the kids. Another purpose of this blog, as I see it, has been to think about how living without a car can/does work in Cape Town (for the annoyingly middle-class-- of course it has to work for tons of people, but perhaps the point is to change the middle-class norm), and I haven't done that enough this year. Next year, there'll be new challenges (living in the Deep South) so hopefully there'll be time to reflect on them. 

Anyway. Here are some recent pictures of Christmas. Christmas and New Year risk passing without too much change for us: Eug and I tend to work every day except Sunday. The main change has been that other people are more available to hang out, which has been awesome. 

On Christmas eve we discovered that a park on the way to Plumstead had a new installation! We stopped to let the kids try it out.  
Christmas eve-- playing outside. 

The kids wanted to pose next to a cactus pad I found (stole off a big cactus on the street).. to plant on a dry spot on our plot. I'm trying to diversify our food supply, and cactus seems to be both a security option, as well as a source of food. I wonder, though, if I can persuade myself to prepare and eat unfamiliar foods when we have nearby grocery stores stocked with familiar foods. I hope so! 

I realised I may not have shown you the Wonderbag (or have I?). It's been great-- like having a slowcooker. It basically keeps food warm (and continuing to cook). Great for beans, lentils, brown rice.

After moving all my plants over to my parent's house, or to the plot, I can't seem to stop myself from starting more plants on our dining table, which is outside these days. The sweet potato slips in the background are almost ready for planting, as are some of the pineapple tops, so I could clear some space for the next round of foraging. 
The joy of cold-stratified persimmon seeds coming up after just 3 days in the soil. Cold stratification seems to have made all the difference with persimmon seeds. I've previously struggled to get them to germinate, but I put these seeds in the fridge, then in wet rockwool in the freezer, and up they are popping. 

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