Yes, it is still HOT in our part of the world, or at least it feels HOT compared to a normal summer for this part of the country. What is even weirder than the HOT temperatures (104-108°F) is that the humidity has climbed as high as 41%. After having 10 years of fairly non-humid (single-digit humidity) weather that only gets up to around 100°F for part of a couple of weeks in late July or early August, this weather leaves one feeling drained. Most food doesn’t even sound good, and that is after being in air-conditioning a good portion of each day. So without further ado, here are the ways that we are “hiding from the heat”:
- All yard and garden work is done between 6-8 a.m. This means that since I’m not good at sleeping in anymore, I take myself outside and get busy while it is still in the upper 60s-lower 70s. The up-side of this is that the garden is now weeded except for the occasional weed. The down-side is that I want to go to bed earlier because I am tired.
- Because of a concern about the electric bill, we don’t close the house up and run the A/C until the inside temperature is at 82°F. For some this is quite warm, however the only time it really gets uncomfortable is in the evening when it is 82° and 80-85° outside. As soon as it drops below 80° outside, we open up the house and move the fans back to the windows to push air through. When at home, clothes are generally tank tops and shorts or culottes. I have a there of the first and need to make more of the second.
- Meals have changed to try and cook as little as possible as that heats the house up. Sandwiches of some sort are the order of most lunches for DS and I during the week. The other two are at work so they have leftovers or sandwiches. I try to eat green salads with cottage cheese and sunflower seeds, but sometimes that isn’t enough to get me through the afternoon. Suppers are haystacks, pasta salads, couscous salad (DD’s favorite), and yes, the occasional cooked dish because you need something to fill the hollow leg of the teenager. DS could live on cereal and fruit all day, but we have to give him something else to keep nutrition balanced.
The chickens are still producing pretty good. Most days we get 4-6 eggs despite the heat. Yesterday was the exception as we only got one. I really couldn’t blame them as it was about 105° at 5 pm. DS always makes sure they have plenty of food, plenty of cool water, and whatever scraps leftover from our meals that are chicken appropriate. The chicks are doing well. The New Hampshire Reds are just over eight weeks old and the black Sexlinks are just over nine weeks old. They have not been mixed in with the older chickens yet as I don’t want them eating layer feed, or having to contend with the two roosters who seem bent on doing their duty by each of the hens every day.
The garden is looking good, though the gophers have dug up a few of my garlic bulbs and eaten them. My cucumbers haven’t come up yet, and very few of the okra came up. I keep hoping that the intense heat will cause them to peek out, but only time will tell. The watermelon seeds did come up and we have 3-4 nice plants. It will be interesting to see if we get any melons by the end of the growing season. My squashes are doing well except for one hill. I don’t know if they are yellow squash, or renegade pumpkins, or maybe the original planting of cucumbers (don’t think it is these, though). They have blossoms, but by the end of each day, the plants are dreadfully wilted. Everything around them stays nice and green with no wilting, so not sure what the deal is. And yes, I did put in little plant name stakes, but the intense sun bleached out the Sharpie writing so I can’t tell you what is planted where. The tomatoes are doing well, though they need staking as they are starting to lay on the ground. I am hoping that if it isn’t done by DH and DS on Sunday that I can get to it early next week. We will also have a small batch of green beans to pick early next week.
Thanks to no rain during the last two weeks and the intense heat, we have started to see cracks in the yard. DH is watering/flooding areas in the front of our yard and the neighbor’s with the assistance of canal/irrigation water that are cracking. We are also having to use this same method to water our two apple trees. Everything else gets hit with a sprinkler.
I can’t wait until the heat is gone. While the VERY cold weather in winter isn’t my favorite, I wish we didn’t have such HOT dry summers. Thankfully, they are short or we would be in even bigger trouble. If you are in the northern hemisphere, stay cool and if you are in the southern hemisphere, stay warm.