“It’s too much trouble to take her outside,” I told Eric, dumping Chloe on the bed beside him. “I’d have to get the blanket and her toys out, plus her, plus the gardening stuff.”

“Okay,” he said sleepily.

“So you’re watching her,” I concluded. Actually I ended up putting her in her crib with toys so he could sleep a few more minutes. But I did end up outside without the baby and with my gloves and spade and seeds. The second pea trellis is up now, and the peas planted (I didn’t buy any, but I had a row’s worth of Pioneer shelling peas from two years ago that I’m thinking should be fine). Also spinach, and kale, and komatsuma, and two kinds of carrots and two kinds of beets. I forget every year just how wonderful it is to be out in the freshly-dug soil with seeds and a spade, burying promises under the earth.

I went inside when it got dark. If it hadn’t I might still be out there, digging and planting and arranging. (What is gardening like above the Arctic Circle?) I felt kind of bad for spending part of the few hours I have with my family every night out in the garden by myself; but I felt great having done it, and great being able to anticipate feeding my family in a couple of months with what I did tonight.

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