Monday, 12 October 2015

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

I have made the rather difficult decision to drop down to the half marathon distance for Queenstown.  I've come to the realisation that studying two Level 7 papers just does not allow the time needed for full marathon training, while maintaining a sane and non-exhausting lifestyle.  Also, I'm pretty sure my left knee just wouldn't handle it.  Getting into the longer distances of late has brought about the need, once again, to tape my knee for anything over about 12km-15km.  I value my life, my sanity, my maintainable energy levels, and my ongoing mobility too much to want to screw it up for the sake of an extra 21km.  The half marathon will be just as beautiful and fun, and we're going to be in Queenstown for over a week so there will be plenty of opportunity to go sightseeing before and after the race.  Deane will not be able to run the marathon, and there's no walking option for that distance, so we'll both be switching to the shorter distance.  And anyway, there's always the inaugural Hawkes Bay marathon next May that I've already registered for if I decide I'm still keen to give the full marathon distance a go.  In other words, I'm just starting to feel lazy and I'm now trying to make excuses justify my decision... Nobody else cares that I won't be running the full, right?

Moving on... my front garden vegetable plot continues to expand.  The sickly cabbage tree has been removed, which has allowed more space for vegetables of course ;)  I had plans of putting a kowhai or kakabeak plant in there, but we might leave that for next year.  Also, Deane made the very good point that it would take ages to grow and by the time it was big enough to enjoy, we wouldn't live here anymore.  The downside of renting...

We have added a dwarf Pacific Rose apple tree to our garden though - that can live in a pot and come with us when we move.  Although I don't envy the poor lads that'll have to transport it!  I would've preferred a nectarine tree (I luuuuuuurve nectarines!!) but I'm the only one that eats them and a whole tree for one person seemed a bit silly.  Maybe one day when we have our own place...

I have enjoyed my first meagre harvests of the year - oyster mushrooms and radishes!


We ate most of these in an aubergine, leek and oyster mushroom orzo with a creamy white wine sauce - it was okay, if a little rich (I subbed soy cream for the creme fraiche).  We've had another batch since then, which ended up in some fried rice one night, and roasted tofu and veges another night.


These little beauties I had all to myself in a roasted radish, spinach and almond salad with balsamic coconut vinaigrette

In any case, here's how the garden was looking first thing this morning before the sun made it's appearance:








The birds have taken a few bites out of my cabbages, zucchini and lettuces, and munched into a radish, so I've covered the garden boxes with bird netting.  The seedlings in the garden around the fences are somewhat protected from slugs and birds by cut down plastic drink bottles.  Unfortunately, before the tree was cut down, we had a rather voracious horde of earwigs that munched through some of the cabbage and kale leaves - they're looking a little the worse for wear.  Hopefully they'll rally and bounce back from the damage.

I've kept the slugs well under control and am lucky to find one or two a night now.  There are aphids trying to suck the life out of my tiny carrots, but I'm doing my best to keep them at bay.  I can't wait for summer when the flowers are in bloom - they'll hopefully attract all the good insects like ladybugs and praying mantises to eat all the aphids, not to mention butterflies and bees to help pollinate the plants.  Fun times!

There's only a few weeks left of the trimester now - I have two more assignments to get done and that is it until next year.  With X and Deane away at camp for most of this week, hopefully I'll be able to get a good chunk of work done.  The house is always so much quieter and relaxed when it's just me and T.

I've been pretty slack lately and haven't been running or going to yoga - my neck and shoulder hasn't quite healed from the last sleeping injury (haha, that sounds so ridiculous!) although I'm getting better at sleeping in a healthier position to prevent more damage.  As for the running, aside from getting assignments done, I've just been lazy ;)  Still, with just over a month to go before the half marathon, it's about time I go stuck into training again so I can actually enjoy the run and soak up the scenery, rather than gasping for breath and trying not to die.  Deane's training is non-existent, so I'm just hoping he actually makes it to the end!

Enough blabbering though, stuff to do - prep for camp, dinner, more planting and garden work, research for assignments etc etc etc.  Oh, and apparently I'm supposed to go run for an hour... yeah, maybe tomorrow... (SO LAZY!)

Have a great week - I hope you're enjoying some lovely warm Spring weather :)

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