Community Garden Workdays

Last Saturday and the Saturday before that we had our first two workdays at the community garden.

The first day was a bit chilly and we finished building the raised beds, filled some of them with city compost, weeded plots, and did general garden upkeep. My bed was one of the ones that was completed and is now 24” high, which will make gardening a bit easier.

Raised bed with soil

My plot after planting carrots and beets on Monday

The second Saturday we did planting in the Rows for the Hungry. Half of the garden land is dedicated to growing food that is either donated to soup kitchens and shelters or sold (with the money then donated). People “adopt” rows to take care of, and while I don’t think I’m reliable enough health-wise at the moment to take on a row, I think it’s a really neat program and definitely plan on helping out.

One of my favorite things about the garden so far is the people; everyone who has shown up for a workday is super friendly and very nice. I’m not sure when the next workday is but I definitely plan on going.

Instagram

Etsy Instagram

Well, I did it. I created an Instagram account for my Etsy shop. Right now I’m working on figuring out my way around the platform and how to do the whole hashtagging thing. Hopefully by the end of the month I’ll start posting more pictures of products and the process behind making them. If you have Instagram you can find me here (my username is expnumber2). I’ll try to spam your feed with shop stuff. If  you only want to see stuff that has to do with the shop then check out the #experimentno2etsy hashtag.

Starting Spring

This past week was spring break for me, and as usual, I didn’t get quite as much done as I had hoped (like writing new posts for example). I’m not really sure what happened to a few of the days, but hey, spring break is supposed to be a break right?

Despite being a bit of a space cadet this past week, I did manage to get my first batch of seeds started.

Green Seedlings in a seed starting tray

This flat includes two types of marigolds (thought I’m thinking one of the types might not be viable since none of the seeds have sprouted yet), two types of tomato, one type of pepper, and some alpine strawberry seeds.

The next batch, which I plan on starting next weekend will include beans, squash, and most likely some more marigolds (never can have too many of those). I started some spinach seeds in my deck boxes this week as well, but they haven’t come up yet, so no pictures of those.

What seeds are you starting this year?

March Garden Update

Pink Flower bud of a thanksgiving cactus.WooHoo! It’s March. You know what that means right? Time to get my seeds started! I have my grow light all set up and ready to go. I’m planning on starting tomatoes, peppers, strawberries, marigolds, and possibly beans. I’ll probably get things started next week, as this week is a bit busy.

Grow light

I’m also going to start working on the proposals to submit to the homeowner’s association for the landscape changes. I want to replace the yew bushes that are up front with an herb garden and add a patio under my deck for extra seating area. I’ll have to draw up sketches and get bids on the patio and fill out the paperwork. I’m hoping if I get it done this month I’ll hear back from the committee before summer starts.

As for the houseplants, they’re hanging in there, waiting for sunnier days and warmer temperatures.

What are your plans for March?

Top Ten Reasons Why I Didn’t Get the Post for Today Written

Snow from this week

Snow from this week

  1. It’s cold here so my bed is extra hard to get out of in the morning.
  1. I really wanted to start a weaving project that has been bouncing around my head for months.
  1. My mandolin was feeling neglected.

Mandolin

  1. The internet is distracting.
  1. I had to clean my gross, mildew-y humidifier (I cleaned it 2 weeks ago so it shouldn’t have been that bad, but it was).
  1. I had some ingredients with limited shelf life so I had to make something with them before they went bad. (These protein bars and this butternut squash soup).
  1. Hanging pictures with my mom yesterday made me really tired, though not as tired as it would have a year ago so yay progress!
  1. I spent an unusual, and completely unacceptable amount of time dealing with one of my doctor’s offices trying to get an order form for blood work with the correct name on it so I could get my blood drawn. Seriously, it was ridiculous.
  1. After writing several short essays for the first test in class this week my brain rebelled at the idea of writing anything that remotely resembled an essay.
  1. It just wasn’t going to happen. Sorry.

New Ivy leaf shaped like a heart.

One Month In

It has now been over a month since I opened my shop on Etsy. I still feel like I have no idea what I’m doing, but from what I’ve read, that seems to be pretty normal. I’ve actually been doing A LOT of reading lately, both on blogs (like Handmadeology and Everything Etsy) and on the Etsy website itself (Seller’s Handbook, Team Discussions). All the information is a bit overwhelming but I’m really glad it’s out there and available.

Handwoven red and black scarf

A sneak peek at the new listing I’m working on.

Probably one of the most useful things I’ve done this month is join teams on Etsy. I’m on the Etsy Success team, Etselry team (Ravelry’s Etsy Team), two SEO and Stats teams, and the local artisan team. So far people have been super helpful and most of the questions I’ve had have already been answered in the discussions. I also created a shop account for Pinterest (here if you want to check it out) as a social media/marketing experiment. I don’t have many followers yet but I think I’ve only had the account for two weeks. All of that, plus trying to get everything listed and some new things made, has meant a very busy first month.

As for month #2, I have 2 big goals. The first is to have over 50 items listed in my store (which will definitely take me longer than a month to do). The second is to learn about and improve the SEO of my listings. Both seem to be crucial to getting noticed and making sales. I’m also thinking of creating a shop Instagram account for marketing, but we’ll see. If I do, I will definitely let you guys know.