Posts Tagged ‘ Life on Hoyne ’

Georgie-girl on the make

Georgie-girl refusing food; we later discover she's full of Egg.

Seems I’m not the only one creating these days. Georgie-girl has been generating eggs, then stuffing herself full of lettuce and turtle food. More eggs, more food. Never at the same time.

She’s a Single Sort of Gal, so said eggs are duds in the reproductive sense. At least we know why she’s been turning up her nose at krill.

Poor Georgie, living in the hands of amateurs. A month ago when I found the remains of an egg in her tank, I figured that was it for a long while. She stopped eating again, and I figured she was reacting to the slight chill in the air. I don’t know when the eggs will stop, but I did feed her disgusting amounts of floating turtle food last night.

As soon as I figure out how to embed videos, I will.

Meanwhile, watch her frantic efforts here.

Refashioning… a work space

I used to have a dining room.

It’s now my work space, home to files and a printer and a few spots to post ideas and deadline reminders and all.

Computer sits on this small table pulled from an alley when it still was green and had a narrow shelf underneath. The shelf since has been dropped, redrilled and bolted on and the whole thing a stunning shade of purple found on the Home Depot Oops paint table. Scanner machine fits underneath now, and the alterations are less apparent.

I can’t sew right now. I’ve knitted a tiny bit while watching TV news, but I don’t feel like I have the luxury of crafting quite yet. Soon, I hope, once the chips have fallen and I have a productive daily routine.

At least I’m finishing something. 

Cleaning house

At least while unemployed and looking for work, I will get done some little stuff I couldn’t manage while on the job full time. Like post to the Craigslist the stuff that has been cluttering my apartment for a few years.

A mini fridge I bought from sears.com for the Mister’s birthday to make a kegerator. Turns out the stainless upgrade they gave me didn’t quite hold a pony keg. Has sat in living room ever since, unplugged with the protective film intact.

And a steamer trunk I’ve had since 2004 and used as a coffee table. Giant thing’s an antique, made in Racine, Wisc., by the Whealy luggage company. While looking it up online, I found this patent information for its “Wardrola” technology. It’s super cool – stands up on one end, and the front swings open. Wooden hangers and a box fit inside, and the locks are pretty elaborate. Love it — but ran out of room since I expanded the home office from a desk for paying bills to a room with my files, ideas and a comfortable place to write.

Must update my Etsy store too with the thrifting I did right before the bomb dropped.

Might be time to have a lay-off sale!

Crafty Mister II (or how to… build a plant tower)

My Mister and I came up with an idea to maximize our small gardening space we share with neighbors in our apartment building in Chicago’s Ukrainian Village: We’d grow goodies along the Y-plane, utilizing endless airspace overhead.

finished terra cotta tower using broken pot on top

But instead of buying these fancy Y-plane kits (expensive), or building raised beds from scratch (too cumbersome and permanent), we’d make some plant towers ourselves using the giant plastic pots we already have, and some basic plumbing pipes and flanges.

See what you think.

Then try it yourself. Check out your pots. Terra cotta with a giant hole are all ready. Plastic pots usually need drilling. We used 4 pots each, a 1/2-inch by 60-inch length of metal pipe (Home Depot), a 1/2 flange (ditto, in the plumbing aisle).

1/2″ flange bought in plumbing aisle

The bottom pot has to be the biggest, then 2 medium and a small one, or three medium ones. Make sure with terra cotta that the pole will fit through the drainage holes.
plastic and terra cotta towers plastic tower on left; terra cotta on right

So you put the flange, flat side down, under the bottom pot, drilling a hole in plastic if necessary. If you drill, you need the kind of bit that bores a big hole.
initial hole drilling start the hole gently, then increase it

set flange in bottom pot, flat side down set the flange into the hole, flat side facing out

Screw the pipe into the flange.
screw pipe into flange screw the pipe all the way into the flange

Weight the bottom pot with bricks or rocks or something heavy that doesn’t take up all the pot space.
weight bottom pot before filling use bricks or rocks to weight the bottom of the tower

Fill with dirt, tamp down really well, and add more dirt if necessary. This is your foundation for the tower.
bottom pot all set tamp the dirt down really well so your foundation is solid

Thread a medium pot onto the pipe, and tilt it as far to one side as you can. Fill it with dirt, tamp, etc. Thread another pot, tilt it to the other side as far as you can, fill with dirt. Repeat until you’re out of pots or out of room.
plastic tower finished plastic tower to be planted with tomatoes and peppers

That’s it. We’re now growing on four Y planes.

It’s five if you count the wooden tower I experimented with for little herbs — nothing anchoring the wooden dowel in the center except for dirt.
bury pole in bottom pot anchor the wooden dowel as best you can
thread pots one at a time, tilting them as far as they’ll go

herby little tower finished terra cotta tower of small herb pots

Cross your fingers…