We decided to observe the beginning of the New Year with the Solstice. It made more sense. The days begin to get longer and we begin to think about spring planting. We're ordering seeds today from Johnny's. And we're trying Feverfew and Borage for the first time. (And also the colorful stuff that clients like-- pink petunias, yellow zinnias, mix and match violets, some red sages.)
Christmas is over, hurray. The music and crowds and christo-capitalist undertones and overtones are just too much. We asked the beast what she wanted for Christmas and she didn't express any great interest in any particular thing. We've talked a lot about gifts for the new king, the sun king, the king named Jesus or Mithra or Mithras, and she's definitely more interested in gifts for babies than in gifts for herself. We did shop for a pink dress (pink dress number 6) and we had a chocolate brownie yesterday in Central Park after visiting Gus the polar bear at the zoo. The Burmese Prince and I didn't get any presents (except for pieces of the Beast's brownie) and it felt pretty sane to be free of all that.
We also baked some cookies and made some popcorn and bought some oranges to give to homeless people. Then I realized that heck, we should do that all the time. A box of tangerines was $4 at our corner fruit stand, and a carton of eggs would run us another $3. So why not take food for other people every time we go outside? At $7 a week there's no excuse not to.
Also, we're saving money through our contract with the Amish farmers of Pennsylvania. Raw milk is cheap, and this week we made another batch of yogurt and a first round of cheese-- an Indian paneer. Suddenly it's true we're 90% localvore, and that's a good feeling.
In the realm of unschooling, I'm finding that I learn more every day about how I learn, what I "need" to learn, and about the fluidity of learning as part of life rather than as part of an EDUCATION SYSTEM. Bea picks up Spanish because our local baker and grocery guys talk to her in Spanish. Her friends in Forest Nursery speak Spanish with her. And we have a little local Queens group for kids to get together and speak/sing Spanish. So, there it is. Spanish surrounds us. French is still lurking. The umbrella is a parapluie, and the birds are petite oiseaux.
I've been eager to take a class on conifers at the NY Botanical Garden, but it costs money and we don't have it. So I'm not going to take a class. I'm just going to learn conifers. We're in Central Park three days a week. Plenty of time to do fieldwork.
So if we save some money on horticulture and botany classes I will put it aside for the dojo. I do still want to get a blackbelt in karate, and that's something that I'd like to learn with other folks in a more structured setting. And perhaps a class on bee keeping. When we make the move from apartment living to house-owning there will definitely be bees in our backyard.
But now, there's a chicken that needs to come out of the oven. Peace out people. We'll be back next week.