Saturday, September 4, 2010

Here are all the seeds I have collected this year for planting in the prairie, from the "salt and pepper" lomatium back in May to the scarlet gilia last week. I have purchased a few packages of seeds from Thorn Creek Nursery in Moscow, ID (sticky geranium, tapertip penstemon, prairie smoke) and will order 20 lbs. of Idaho fescue from Grassland West, but everything you see here has come from our prairie and a few sites around Palouse (the salt-and-pepper lomatium actually grows in a little patch by the railroad in downtown Palouse). I'll wait until we've had some more rain, probably early October, before I start planting.

I am taking about five times as long to get this opera recorded and scored than I had in mind, but I did manage to get another song "in the can" this last week. My method, whether the project is music or rebuilding this house or prairie restoration, is to vastly underestimate the amount of time and work involved in doing anything; ignorance is the key. By underestimating the time and effort involved, I trick myself into getting all excited about seeing whatever it is take shape, and dive in: "Wow, I can get this done in a couple months!" Once I get into it I'm hooked and keep going until it's finished; somehow I've acquired the patience I never had in my 20s.

The wraparound porch on this house is a great example (of course, the nearly 25 years I have spent working off-and-on on my opera is another obvious one)...I thought it would be a perfect summer project back in 1993. That first summer I got it framed and a floor on it. Framing and sheathing the roof took me until November that year. I spent the next summer putting on the roof and making all the parts for the railings and painting them (it was amazing how long that took). I was able to install all those fabulous railing parts in the summer of 1995. I have to confess that the ceiling on the underside of the porch didn't go up until 2005. Welcome to my world. But I got it done, and it's a really nice porch.