You're not missing much.
The joint looks exactly the same (didn't even take a final picture), except that I've completely neglected it. On purpose.
Know why? The outside cats that hang in our yard. They totally planned a jail break...INTO the garden.
Luckily, I hate tomatoes and Hadley only ate stuff from the garden when it was perfectly secure and safe from cat crap. Whew. Poor Dave, though. :-\
So, I would call this year a complete bust. Hugest. Sigh. Ever. The cost and energy that goes into creating a garden is so damn frustrating when you think of how little you reap when something like this happens. We did get a small amount of good stuff early in the season, but not enough to call it even, I don't think.
Let's just say that since we don't know where we'll be laying our heads come next spring, and since our garden has been so hit-and-miss over the years, I'm a tad gun-shy to start planning. I know that an enclosed space is necessary, with rows and paths. But I'm ultimately determined to be successful and learn from our mistakes, even if EVERY SINGLE YEAR we get slammed with a different one.
And the only thing I can say as far as perspective goes is that I'm incredibly lucky. My grandfather's family relied greatly upon the bounty that their tiny backyard garden provided them (as did many). Everything got canned. Everything got used. Today, we at least have the opportunity to obtain fresh, nutritious fruits and veg all winter long without blinking an eye. In her worst days, she had to scrape for her family's survival.
So, one literally crappy growing season can't outweigh the fact that this is just a hobby. One day, I hope to provide more for my own family, not for myself, but for the memory of my great-grandmother.
And you'd better believe that I'll be trying out one or two of your recipes when I do, Clara.