Monday, August 31, 2009

Kudos to Silver Cross Pediatrics!

Good morning! Happy Monday to you! As I sit here at Silver Cross Hospital with my son, I must tell you what exceptional service we are receiving from everyone on the Pediatric Unit!
Kudos to the entire Pediatric Unit for such TLC!!!

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Laundry on the Homestead

Time to hang yet another load of laundry.
I overheard a neighbor talking about us the other day.
His friend asked when he was going to hang out his laundry?
He replied, "I'm not a robot. They're robots! All they do is work!"
I was so flattered!
Then back to mowing the grass we still have.
As time passes there will only be grass in the play are.
Vegetables will be growing everwhere else!
Life on a homestead is always busy and never boring!

Multimedia message

As I look out over my farm I am aware of how far I've come since we bought this place. But I am also very aware how far I have to go to catch up with the homestead I'm modeling. Little Homestead In The City is the homestead I am modeling mine after with exceptions to allow for the codes in this area.
It is good to see how far I've come and good to have direction for my life!

View from my Bathroom Wiindow

This is the view through my bathroom screen. It's the wonder that greets me every time I get into the tub. I gaze out at clean laundry on the line, corn as high as my head and tomatoes ripe and waiting for me.
Truly, can you tell me what better view I could find than this?

A Feast in My Backyard

Hi! This is Broadleaf Plantain. It's a wild edible that we've found quite yummy!
The leaves cook up nicely as a spinach substitute. The seeds are good seasoned and roasted or cooked into a casserole as a protien.
Now, you absolutely must not eat any wild edibles from areas you are unsure of. Are pesticides, herbicides or inorganic fertilzers in use? Any run-off from farms or roadways? It is far better to go without than risk your health!
Go pick some plantain today! Happy, healthy eating!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Stock Up on Firewood!

Hey! Notice how October the weather is? Well, that's because the snow is coming in October, so typical October weather is Now!
If you haven't started to stock-up on all the winter necessities, now is a good time to start.
Why wait till the first week of October, when all your neighbors are in a panic?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Foraging Bounty!

Hi! We went foraging in the woods for a bit tonight and came home with a lot of free protien! Due to the bizarre weather, the nuts are falling early. So are the pinecones.
With all the food recalls and prices going so high, it is critical that we all know of all options available.
Today is a good day to take a nature walk with you kids. You'll be amazed how much food you'll find!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

New Research Project

Well, I finally decided to take my research to a different place. Rather than just reading and applying all I can, I thought I'd share with you.
The first book I am reading (rereading) is "The Book of the New Alchemists". I read through this book a couple times last year and went back to sections several times because I just couldn't get it off my mind.
Today I am starting over fresh. I am going to reread it, check the internet to see how their designs worked, then apply all I can to my lot.
It will be interesting to see how I fare on these projects compared to them!

Organizing Pantry... Finally

It's so good to finally get the shelves in! I decided to put away the groceries now and pull out shelves and finish adding the cedar when we have time.
This way we can gauge what we are stocked up on and go back to rotating stock properly!
All those boxes we kept tripping over held way less food than we thought, but now we know where we stand. That is a very good feeling!!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Laundry Soap Results

Hey! Sorry I didn't get back to you about the soap and how it turned out.
I stirred it tonight to start a new load and it is great! Thicker than before, but not separated.
We are officially good to go!

Front of the House Harvest

Hey! I moved the car out on the street and look what I found! I do believe this is a squash bonanza. And right outside my front door, too.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

So Pretty!

I couldn't resist taking one more picture of the new section! Please, pardon my giddiness!!!

Fence Panels Go Up!

Well, as we near evening, the fence panels are going up. Although the fence is no where near finished, we are closer to having a secure lot.
That feeling is priceless!!!

Fence for North Side of House

It's finally going up! The neighbors are SO pissed!

Fencing Continues!

Yes, we're at it again! This is the front of the house. The fence itself is only 4 feet high as per city code. The posts are 8 feet high so we can build a pergola across the drive.
Once finished, the pergola will be open from the top of the fencing to the top of the posts themselves. Above the posts we will mount a framework and top with latticework.
Roses, wisteria, clematis, etc. will climb up the posts and drape fragrantly over our car.

My Tomatoes Runneth Over

I went 'shopping' because I was spreading more cardboard to expand my garden and look what I found! There are more out there ready and many the bugs got first. I only stopped because my bag was full!
Got to go prep these for processing... talk to you later!

Cooling Time...

Well, the batch was thoroughly reheated. I added a bit more borax and baking soda as well as left-over Clorox 2, Oxi Magic and about 1/4 bottle of Xtra detergent.
Now that it's stirred, I'll let it cool and see what we've got.
Check back in a couple hours to see the progress. See you then!!

Unusable Mess

Hey! What a beautiful Sunday!
Remember that last batch of laundry soap I made? Well, it separated as it cooled and did NOT clean our laundry completely. I was reduced to using commercially made products as I did not have time to address the problem.
Today I am going to redo the batch. I am not going to throw it out, but reheat it and add another 1/2 batch. I am thinking I did not heat it enough last time.
Stop back later for the results!!!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Environmentally Sound Cat Litter

Have you ever thought about all that chemically-based clumping cat litter? How good are those chemicals for you cat? What happens to them as they break down in your local landfill?
How much better would it be to use animal bedding? A soft bed of pine or cedar for those precious, tender paws?
And, as long as your cats are vacinated, you have a free source of fresh manure for you garden. An addedd benefit is that you know what they eat, so you know, specifically how clean it is. After all, who can say how safe all the hormones they treat cattle with are in those bags of cow manure?
Fresh animal bedding helps you and your feline family!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

'Shopping'

Well, hi there! Would you look at what Candi found when she went 'shopping' tonight in our 'yard'?!
Cherry tomatoes, pear tomatoes, sweet corn, strawberry corn, banana peppers, wax beans, green beans, summer squash and cucumber.
Anybody want to loan me a dehydrator (or 6)?

The Creek

Good morning! This is the little creek that handles the runn-off from our pond. It runs through our garden and has proven to be a wonderful help in keeping it watered.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Garden Beauty at Night

Zucinni

Finally I peeled and sliced the giant zucinni a friend gave me. A tasty addition to the dehydrator tonight!
I am still using the same Excaliber Dehydrator... It runs non-stop for days without complaining.
This year it is helping me store a good crop of squash and tomatoes. We'll eat well over the winter!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Carrots

As I roamed the fridge in search of unsuspecting veggies, I found a bag of carrots, lost & forgotten, but still good.
I grabbed 4 and promptly peeled and sliced. Then I seasoned with more Adobo (blue cap).
The house will smell so good tonight with all the veggies cuddled up together in the dehydrator!

Tomatoes to Dehydrate

Wow! Yummy fresh tomatoes popped in the dehydrator with a bit of Goya Adobo sprinkled on top.
Now to prep more veggies!

Purple Green Beans... Yum!

This year we grew purple 'green' beans again. These taste just like regular green beans, but are a vibrant purple.
This makes for an excellent disguise if you need to plant where others may see them. Most people look at the oddly-colored veggies and think these are spoiled. They walk past a 'rotting garden' and never know the trick we played on them!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The New Pond

Early Morning Surprise

As I gazed out the window this morning, I noticed that Candace's Hibiscus is in bloom. It is so beautiful that I had to grab my phone, run into the backyard and snap a photo!
When it is all in bloom, it will cover one corner of the garden. I am so glad I moved and divided it this Spring.
Now we'll be able to enjoy it from the patio!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Clouds

The clouds are hanging low, as usual; as though they are waiting to pounce!

Digging A New Pond

After the contractors finished putting in city water we finally had a chance to put our pond back in. We had a pond out front last year but it was a bust.
I think the placement under a deciduous tree inhabited by voracious racoons was the deciding factor! Besides the leaves mucking up the water, the racoons quickly ate every creature we put in.
This time it is not under a tree and the racoons have moved on. We're hoping for a pretty pond and a lot of butterflies.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Who is she?

As I wandered Oakwood Cemetery, I found this grave marker. I have no idea who she is or what her circumstances are, but will try to remember to ask Chris next time I'm down there.
How sad to only have a pipe and a metal plate instead of a headstone. How much more sad to see it has been vandalized!
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