Christmas will be very light, but joyous this year. I've had some expenses come up, as they usually seem to do, and now my finances are quite depleted.
First, now that it's colder outside, it's time to address the bug problem. One thing that would help seniors in a big way would be an allotment entirely for pest control, especially here in Florida. We have world-class bugs. In May, I allowed someone to stay in my home for about two months - She brought fleas!! Some years ago, one of my BF's infested my home with German cockroaches - They are truly products of Hades! I've battled them on my own for several years, and even had professionals in. I'd get about two months in for treatment and run out of money. It's maddening. This year, I had several companies give me quotes - Ideal is indoor and outdoor, but I simply cannot afford the up front charge for pest control, nor can I afford the almost $40 per month maintenance. One company has 90 day program with intensive treatment that should get rid of these pests, and then I'll have to find a way to treat monthly on my own. This is almost $400.00, but I'm at my wits end with the bugs and while I bath my little dogs and treat them with Advantage Multi, they're still getting bitten.
I remembered that when before we moved here we had fleas. I treated the yard with beneficial nematodes and within a couple of weeks, no more fleas! So I invested in the nematodes and applied them Thursday - This should take care of our outside pest problem.
And of course, there's home maintenance. My kitchen faucett has developed issues, and needs to be replaced.....Yes, Jane, it's always something, LOL!
Other than that, I've been starting my Christmas gifts. I've been making things throughout the year, and now have purchased gift bags and tissue. I'll also make cookies and other treats to add to the bags, and have a couple of gifts that will be mailed. So far, I've been blessed with enough money to cover all of this!
Thanksgiving was wonderful this year - Just my son and me. We enjoyed roast turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, peas and two pies all the next week, and I managed to can 7 quarts of turkey broth and save a huge container of meat picked off the bones for my pups. They are really enjoying this on top of their dinners!
The garden has been a great blessing this year! I started my last 1/2 gallon batch of dill pickles this week, and will be removing the cucumber vines and trellis in a day or so. The previous batches, about 7 pints, were canned and put away.
I'm hoping to be harvesting my first batch of collards by Christmas, and maybe broccoli by January 1st. The seed packets say the maturity date is 54 days, but here in Central FL, it seems to take about a month longer. Funny how that is!
We might also have some Buttercrunch lettuce (planted next to the broccoli) and radishes by Christmas, or at least by New Year. The little reddish heads are Cherokee Red lettuce that was transplanted this week. Those should be ready to start harvesting in a few weeks.
I'm planting more Cherokee Red lettuce in Zone A - Just a few transplants now, and more will be ready to plant out in another two weeks.
All in all, the Fall/Winter garden is coming a long just fine!
Now, it's time for me to get my butt in gear - I'm making feta cheese today. I'll try to remember to get pictures.