Sunday, April 11, 2010

A New Start!

I can't believe that it has been a year since I finished my radiation treatments for breast cancer. Time just flies. I have been feeling so much better as time goes on --- I didn't even realize that that I WASN'T feeling that great before all of this. No big news ---- and that's a wonderful thing to me. Every six weeks I have to have the port flushed out, and every 3 months I see the oncologist. Saw him last week and everything was just fine. And so far, I've lost about 42 pounds since July (about 65 total since I began the cancer journey). I finally settled into the diet thing as I knew it just had to be. I stopped kicking and screaming and just sucked it up!

My only hard thing was trying to get back into some sort of "normal life" -- moving on -- or "finding a life" -- whatever you want to call it. It was to the point that I didn't even know what to write about here on a blog. Every day seemed a little boring and just the same old routines. . . . Until . . . .

My sister started putting in her garden a few weeks ago. At first, I thought it was something I didn't want to do. I've been there, did that, didn't work, etc., etc. Besides, I didn't really know if I had the strength to do all that was involved, as I would be starting from scratch. But then I couldn't stand it any longer. I still had my earth boxes from years ago, and thought i would just do those 5 earth boxes. How hard could it be to fill them with dirt and plant some tomatoes????

So the week of March 15th or so, I went out and bought my dirt, my tomato plants and started. . . . . . And it hasn't stopped. I'm obsessed!!!!!

I saw somewhere on the internet about these "grow bags." Have you seen them?? They come in several sizes, small ones for strawberries, etc., medium sized for tomatoes, and the large sacks for potatoes, etc. They are a plastic type material and sell for about $20.00. So. . . . one day I was in Staples, and they had their reusable shopping bags at the counter for $1.00 and I grabbed up 10 of them. Filled them with dirt, planted my peppers, eggplant, sage, cabbage, etc., in those. By the way, Joann's has really nice green ones for $1.00. I have some of those, too.

My favorite planters were these styrofoam ones that look like old whiskey barrels. I put those back into use with string beans and yellow squash. I ran out of pots.
Don't laugh, but I went out and bought a bunch of styofoam cooler chests with the lids, punched holes in the bottoms, and put those to use, too. So now I have EVERYTHING growing.

My zuchinni already has tons of blossoms, my tomatoes and peppers have blossoms, beans are started to climb and cucumbers are on their way. Winter squash is planted, and I'm stocked up on seeds for my fall garden.

Have any of you ever done the straw bale gardening????? I am so intrigued with it. You can read up on it here.

I just don't know if it's worth the price of the straw bales, as you have to get new ones every year, and I'm not sure I can carry the bales!!!!!! But it would be wonderful not to have to bend when you garden!!!!

The best part of all of this is how it has made me feel. I feel now that life has moved on for me, that I am once again able to do something that I thought I couldn't. Lugging those bags of dirt isn't easy, but I did it, and just that makes me feel just great!!!! I may never get a tomato or a pepper, but it was really a good feeling to know I could at least try!


Ahl Cooped Up said...

My Husband's Grandfather was a Dutch Imigrant to NJ too!
Your Garden story is sweet.
I'm happy to hear that you have had a great recovery.


Judy's Vintage Collections said...

Cora, it's so good to see your feeling better! I keep checking on you. And then would check to see if you were selling on Ebay. As long as I saw that. I knew you were OK! I am glad that our prayers are answered! I am happy you are wanting to plant a garden! I love the baby plants and watching them grow. It's so much fun to see them come alive! I do not garden anymore (due to age)except for some flowers. and most of those are in pots. you have given me an ideal on planting me a few pots of plants. :)
I proud for you on your weight lost! WOW you done wonderful!
Be safe in Jesus is my prayer!
from my heart!
in the heart of Texas!

Beverly...Heartland Creations said...

It is great to hear you are feeling better and even gardening! You go Girl! Happy harvesting!
God Bless You and your puppy dog!

KathyB. said...

Gardening is truly a remedy for so many things that ail a person in body and mind. What a wonderful and encouraging post!

ByLightOfMoon said...

Cora, You are a Delightful Soul! It is SO wonderful to hear form your again. I am so glad you have worked through your feelings and have found an awesome way to deal with them.

I did terrariums over the winter with plant light in bathtub but just with the plants that I wanted to save from last summer. I am ot much on vegetable gardening. Mine are mainly ferns and geraniums. I also started have cactus.

I will look into the hay today, I have got to go get some soil and mulch. My problem is keeping our two dogs out of them. Hey, The recycle sacks sound wonderful and the ice chests.
I almost have to plant about ground and their dig sites with fences around my planting, and we don;t have a very big back yard.

Send us some photos of your plants, it does feel good to get dirt on your hands doesn't it.
Get yourself some lavender and rosemary, they are very easy to grow and smell so fabulous! Great inspiration!

Smiles, Cyndi

Char5 said...

Cora, I am just so glad to see you back here!!! YAY! I was glad to read that you are feeling better and cannot believe it has been a year since you posted that you had finished your chemo. Keep us up on your gardening. I wish I could send you one of my strong sons as an adopted "nephew" to give you a helping hand with the heavy stuff. I am sending you BIG ((HUGS)) from WV.

Nancy M. said...

Great idea with the bags! I'm glad to hear you're enjoying your garden!

Daria said...

Cora ... so nice to hear you are doing so well.

Wishing you all the best ...

Anonymous said...

I'm so happy that you are blogging once again! I missed you!! I love my little garden and keep trying new things. Not having luck with my life long diet tho. Congrats on your weight loss! My Hubby is three months into chemo....

Farmhouse Blessings said...

Reading this post just made my eyes full of tears. I've missed you, Cora! Oh how I've missed you!