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Thursday, February 11, 2016

Big girl playtime

Remember earlier this week I said I was ordering a portable greenhouse for getting seedlings ready for planting in the garden?

This is what came in the mail, in the box, of course ;-) I put on some really great music (because everything is better with really great music), and got right to it.

Putting it together was reminiscent of my many years playing with Tinker Toys. Remember those? Only, there was no real room for creativity with this greenhouse.

While I was putting it all together, it occurred to me, this is really women's work. Here's why.

With the men in my family, I see this going one of two ways.

1) not at all according to the instruction sheet, because as we all know, men don't need instructions. And there needs to be that requisite moment of wondering why the manufacturer sent all the wrong pieces.

or, 2) a matter of overthinking this, completely. Because, as we all know, there must be a "best" way to do this, a formula, a dozen or more "special" tools, pieces laid out tidily, not in a heap on the floor (as my get-right-to-it nature would have), but in an organized fashion, so that each piece is in easy reach at just the appropriate time. Now, this greenhouse would most definitely turn out perfectly, there's no doubt about that. It's just that a 30-minute assembly could potentially turn into hours and hours of meticulous execution.

As I said, this is definitely women's work!

(just kidding, of course -- <wink> )


  1. How wonderful that you now have another way to get your garden in early. I am sooooo envious, but wish you great success with the end result of having an even more productive garden this year.

    1. Hi Jayne,
      I think it will help me get more seeds going at a time, which should mean earlier garden veggies. I already moved the lettuce seedlings, that I started 3 weeks ago, out to this greenhouse, on the deck. And I moved my rosemary plants back outside to it, too.
      Thanks on the good wishes!

  2. How fun! I have the same kind (sitting next to it actually). Because of our crazy wind here in Oklahoma, we can't use it outdoors, but my husband rigged 2 foot shop lights, two per shelf on it (all but the bottom shelf), and it's my seed starting area. :)

    And by the way, I love your farmhouse sink!

    1. Hi Cat,
      Oh, what a smart idea! That could be a possibility for indoor winter gardening of leafy greens.

      It was a bit windy, here, yesterday afternoon. One of the first things that happened, after moving this outdoors, was that it blew over. I had to weigh it down with a couple of heavy pots on the bottom shelf. I'll get a bungie cord and a couple of hooks and secure the top of the frame against the house, in the next week. But the pots did help for me. It made it through the night just fine.

      Our wind situation may be more sporadic than yours. We get a wind just before a storm comes in. Then for most of the late spring, through to early fall, no wind that's noticeable. Of course, I'm wanting this to work for late winter through early spring, when we have the most wind. We shall see how this works!

  3. It is gorgeous! I love it. How fun . I have always wanted a greenhouse. Happy planting :)

    1. Hi Patti,
      Thank you. I love being able to plant this time of year.

  4. Gorgeous kitchen!! BTW...


    1. Thanks, YHF! I like it, too!

    2. Love your cheery yellow kitchen! Did you paint those cabinets yourself? Of course you did! Any tips? My kitchen cabinets desperately need some paint but I'm too much of a coward to jump in!

    3. Hi Linda,
      No, I hired a painter for this job. I'm just smart enough to know when something would be too big of a project for me to do on my own, given what I had going on at the moment.

      But, I have painted kitchen cabinets before. Getting started, I chose the smallest wall of cabinets, to begin (less overwhelming to think about). I just focused on that small area, doing all of the necessary prep work, taking my time to get it right, etc. I brushed on the paint with that kitchen, but these current cabinets were sprayed, and I like the smooth finish that gives, so I'd also consider renting a sprayer for next time. But back to the kitchen I did paint myself. I took all hardware off, and removed doors from cabinets, and did most of the painting in a garage. Trying to paint around taped off bits (like hinges or knobs) just invites brush strokes. I marked everything with a number, so I could put it all back in the right spot. I set up sawhorses and painted the doors, flat. I used high quality paint and brush. This is definitely one of those times that better quality means a better outcome.

      If you're like me and afraid of botching the job, start really small, in an inconspicuous area of the kitchen. You may want to even "practice" painting, by painting a small piece of furniture, first, to get yourself in the groove of painting. Don't rush the paint job. It's better to only get one section of your kitchen done really well, over the course of a month, than to do a rushed job trying to get the whole kitchen repainted. And understand that it will take you a lot longer than a professional painter, because you have a life outside of painting cabinets. Just be patient with yourself.

      I will be doing the painting when these cabinets need a redo, in about 2 or 3 years. Painted cabinets simply need touching up from time to time. I'll let you all know how that goes, then.

      But another thing to consider, if you really, really don't want to do this yourself, there's no shame in saving your money elsewhere, so that you can afford to hire a professional. That's how we do things with our house a good part of the time. We scrimp and save until we have enough in the bank to pay for someone to tackle big projects for us. We know what is just outside of our area of comfort with DIY projects, and what we can manage ourselves.

      Good luck, Linda!

  5. Here, the men are more likely to read the directions and I'm the one who's more likely to jump it.

    Good luck with your new greenhouse. It will interesting to see how it works.

    1. Thanks, live and learn.
      It's already helped me to move some of the seedlings outside, to make room for new seeds in the indoor flat.

  6. Oooooo... I hope you have fun with your greenhouse! I still haven't quite figured out the best way to deal with mine - the temperature swings were a bit more than I had anticipated, and I think if I tried to start seedlings in it without addressing that issue they'd all just get fried. Seriously, once the sun would hit it, the temperature would soar to well over 100 in a few minutes, so when I didn't get to it in time I ended up wilting a bunch of my plants.

    Anyhow, you might try replacing the heavy pots with big containers filled with water. In theory, the water provides thermal mass which will absorb some of the heat during the day - keeping it from spiking so severely, and radiate it back at night. They'll also provide weight to keep it from blowing over!

    I can't wait to read your reports and hear how it goes!

    1. Hi Cat,
      Great tip on the water in the greenhouse. I will definitely do that. Later, in spring, we do have those days that really heat up the deck. But still too cool at night for seedlings. It makes me wonder if this sort of greenhouse would be well-suited to starting seeds even earlier in the year, here.

  7. Oh, how neat! You will have loads of fun with that. :)


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