Friday, June 27, 2008


Here's my garden as it was ten days ago. LOL, I thought nothing was growing, that everything was just sitting there, but yanno, I've harvested herbs since then and the pots have filled out more than I realized!

The Greek Oregano and French Tarragon yesterday afternoon. The tarragon still looks wispy and needs cut back soon, but the pot is healthy despite my preoccupied state that allowed the plants to go a couple days without water. Luckily, the apartment manager watered them when she watered her own garden.

I have some new pots. These are more expensive than I would ordinarily allow myself, but the selection was VERY limited since this is, evidently, the end of the gardening season in Wichita; almost all the seeds and pots are gone, and all the plants were half-price.

Eggplant "Classic" and bell pepper "Valencia Orange." Don't they look lonesome?! I thought they did... so Burpee Stringless bush beans are along the back of each pot, and Yellow Straightneck squash are in the front. We'll see what grows, what lives, what fruits.... intensive planting like this means only the strongest survive and it also means the pots will need constant attention, water, fertilizer.

My lettuce seedlings after a watering... they didn't all stand back up again and I found myself very impatient with them. I had to actually bring them upright myself. That doesn't bode so well, yanno? I doubt they're going to last a real long time, and since they so far have no *flavor* to speak of, I so far don't much care. They're useful as a green mulch in the butternut squash pot to keep the roots cool, but at this point I have my doubts about their food value.

Ahhh, purslane! I have visons of this one filling the pot and spilling over the sides... purslane can easily do that. This one has such pretty apricot flowers, and the bees were investigating it this afternoon. There are Jack o'Lantern punkins planted at the back of the pot... again, we'll see what grows and what doesn't. The basil sprouts are there at the side.

Do you get the idea that I think of gardening as a vast experiment? *grin* Tis more fun that way!

The butternut squash has grown more than I thought it had! Tis so nice to have a record in pictures, so I don't have to rely on my faulty memory, lol... Wednesday morning I had a surprise... went to look at it and thought that silvery gray discoloration was mildew (AACCKK!!)... but a closer look showed me it was just the natural hairiness of squash finally showing up on the new leaves! Yay!!

Yesterday afternoon showed me a squash bug crawling around on those leaves... eeep. I flicked it away but I will not use pesticides; there are fireflies in the backyard behind us (where the daylilies are against the fence) and I just don't want to poison any more of their environment than is already happening. One has already come to investigate the plants and I would LOVE for them to come and play in my garden! So it has be survival despite bugs for my plants, and most likely survival despite any diseases, too. I will do my part to get everything growing fast--the rest is up to them.

The apartment manager mentioned plans for expanded garden space next year. I'm happy about that!

My own newly expanded garden! I still have some seedling pots but they dry out so fast that I think I will not keep them long... or maybe I will get another plant saucer to group them into, so the water doesn't drain away so fast. The worst problem with container gardening is that the water drains away before the soil is all the way wet, and the roots get trapped in the dry interior. Watering from the bottom and letting the plants suck the water up through the pots' drainage holes helps immensely with that problem.

The round pot that I put the purslane into was the very last one the hardware store had, and those two pot saucers were also the very last. Tis a little unnerving--since they had these things all winter long--that they wouldn't have any more now that it is summer. These are fourteen inch pots and really, that's a little small for serious container gardening; I wouldn't put a rose in one that small, for instance, and certainly not a dwarf fruit tree. But they will do for a start! And if my gardening neighbor is right about the squash vine borers, well, they'll all look good with full crops of green beans too.

Oh, I should mention that the potting soil I used was a little less than I expected, quality-wise, but again, little choice was left. These are forty pound bags, one per pot, of a compost/sand/perlite mixture... sticky, lumpy, and quite likely to go sour from watering--or to dry hard like a brick from lack of watering. But again... tis a start.

When we have some extra money, I'll go to GardensAlive! and get their potted plant fertilizer. It corrects a lot of problems with potting soils, and it's especially good at binding up soil salts. That was a problem for me in Phoenix because the water was so alkaline; it might not be a problem here, but the fertilizer will work on that "souring" problem also.

They sent me a sample of TomatoesAlive! one year and it shocked me how well it worked. I was sold right then and there, but once I tried HouseplantsAlive! I was hooked forever, lol... Anyhow, for veggies, I'll get the one meant for flowering plants.

There's a sale on right now, to get $20 off a $40 order... AND, this is the only company I know of that has vegetarian fertilizers! Plus they have organic pet care products. You should go look, lol... I don't often wax lyrical about any company, but this one's special.

Now if only I could have a compost pile, I would be a happy camper indeed! But that might be asking a lot of an apartment complex, lol...

Happy gardening!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

thinning lettuce

Dawn asked about thinning lettuce. You do it because you were profligate--one might even say exuberant--and you sowed the seed with wild abandon, so that the lil seedlings have no room to grow. See how they are all smushed together under the squash seedlings? And you do it as soon as they are big enough to go on a cheese sandwich *eyebrow waggle* which means about as long as alfalfa sprouts. I just pulled out small clumps of them from all over the pot, washed and dried them and put them on my sandwich--roots and all.

I have to say though... I wish it were the spinach I had been exuberant with, because lettuce thinnings sure don't have much flavor! Well, maybe as they grow they'll get more. I'll certainly have to thin them repeatedly until the last plants have room to grow to full-size.
And yes, the squash needs thinned also... but I am reluctant to do so because I think that multiple plants might offer me a chance to get squash despite the squash vine borers, which I found out were bad in this area. Of course, I didn't find this out until after I bought and planted the squash seed. *wry smile*

It's coming on time for fertilizer. Everything has stopped growing (or slowed drastically) and I suspect that means whatever nutrients were in the potting soil have been used up now. My fingers are crossed that I can find something natural (or even organic!) at the hardware store.

Monday, June 23, 2008

tired! and garden, and doily--and firefly magic!

A new blog post is coming after I finish rearranging the living room; that may be a couple days yet. We got more furniture and are finally able to unpack most of the boxes and tubs. *huge sigh of relief!*

Today I thinned the lettuce and put the thinnings on my cheese sandwich for lunch. I also planted the first of the peas (too late, I know, but hope springs eternal, lol) and a couple seeds of Bright Lights cosmos. I love that flower; it is SO intensely colored! And it should be able to deal with the heat from the concrete. I let the pots dry out over the weekend--what a way to celebrate Summer Solstice, by letting my garden go thirsty, eeek--but they seem to be okay, and I did water today. I really need more pots and some green bean seeds! The lil bitty flowerpots are really not going to make it through the summer heat okay unless I water them twice a day, and that wastes water and effort, plus the roots will cook anyway. I really prefer the big 20 inch pots but all the hardware store has is 14 inchers; still, they'll do!

The doily is on the last round and I am blown away, not just by the loveliness of pineapples and fans, but by the fact that I have stuck it out and am finishing it, lol.... I was bored for a while there and that's usually the death knell for any doily. But I persevered and it will be done soon! Maybe even this week!

Walking the doglet in the evenings I have been privileged to see fireflies! They seem to love really weedy lawns, and we have a lot of those on the block. Last evening, I got close enough to see that a firefly is a dusty red bug with a yellowy cream behind. From a distance, their lights look like TRULY miniature white holiday lights, twinkling on and off... but up close it is shocking, really shocking... they're neon chartreuse!!!

This is funny because the first armchair I turned down at the thrift store was neon chartreuse and I made a big deal about being so shocked by it, lol... who would want that color in their living room?!

Well, now I know... anyone who loves fireflies! lol!

I have to say, it's the darndest thing when those bugs light up. You suddenly can't see their behinds; all you see is the light. I had thought from a lifetime of shining a flashlight through my hand *grin* that one would see the traces of veins or whatever... but all you see is the light. Tis magic!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

no tortilla left behind

Today I remembered to snap the pic before I started eating, lol... my seasoned tortillas. They were yummy with a light spread of cream cheese--it was out because that's how I pill the doglet, wrap the pill in cream cheese, and she's been hurtng with this changeable weather. Big thunder-boomer at 4:30 this morning.

Yesterday, I found a Life Rule. When your wife is madly scrambling to clean up a mess which has interrupted her cooking and which will not stop compounding itself, and she hollers into the next room to come and see this horrific calamity, and she cusses about how much she HATES this machine which is still spouting messes all over even THOUGH the first thing she did was to turn it OFF.... do not look at her and say, "I never have that kind of trouble with it."

She will say something truly obscene and shocking to you.

Oh yes, it's true, she will. Uh huh. *nods*

Life Rule Number Two: If the top-of-the-line coffee pot is in the thrift store, it WILL leak. Badly. Your wife will think for months that YOU are just a slob because of this leak. She will not figure out that you are not the problem until the coffee pot finally leaks all over itself, the counter, and the wood floor in one glorious explosion into non-functionality----WHILE she is desperately trying to cook breakfast and has tortillas (now burning) in a hot skillet.

No one gives away a top-of-the-line coffee pot unless *something* is wrong with it. Now we know what it was.

Gryph did forgive me for the obscenity, but not until AFTER mentioning not knowing "the collapse of all civilization" could be triggered by a coffee pot, lol....

Anyhow, a new and gloriously plain and practical coffee pot *which does NOT leak* is sitting on the counter now, but I forgot to make the rest of the tortillas. Found them in their lil plastic bowl this morning and did they ever smell GOOOOD!! Who knew one could make sourdough tortillas, so to speak? So I rolled em out and cooked em! They took a LOT more flour than usual, though.

The seasonings I used when I made the dough were garlic salt (instead of plain salt), black pepper, Italian seasoning, basil, and chili powder. Gryph says plain tortillas are good but these are wonderful, so seasoned tortillas it is---and I'm never going to worry about using all the dough in one day again. Breakfast was grand this morning! And yanno---I can make dough the night before now, and breakfast can be grand any time!

Cath, wishing she had more of those tortillas right now!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

What to do with a spotted banana

It usually takes three or four bananas to make banana bread. You can fake it with two... but what do you do when someone comes along behind you and EATS the second nanner?

"A DINGO ate my----", wait.... never mind; wrong story.... *blush*

Banana Walnut Cake

1 reeeaallllly ripe banana, mashed (about 1/3 cup)
2 eggs, well beaten
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vinegar

1 cup flour
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/8 teaspoon (or less) cardamom
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon punkin pie spice

(topping: cinnamon sugar, candy sprinkles)

Grease an 8x8 cake pan (I use glass pans) and set aside. Preheat the oven to 350 Fahrenheit.

Sour the milk with the vinegar; let sit while you beat the eggs into the banana.

In a separate bowl, mix together the flour and walnuts. Coat the walnuts evenly, then mix in the sugar. Once they're all well combined, add the leavening and spices and mix again.

Combine the milk with the banana and mix well. Stir the banana/milk mixture into the flour mixture with a gentle hand. Stop mixing once all the flour is incorporated into the batter. Pour into the baking pan.

Sprinkle the top with cinnamon sugar and candy sprinkles (I used teeensy gingerbread men shapes left over from the holidays). Bake 25 minutes. Cake will crack on top when done; test with toothpick to be sure. The toothpick should come out of the center of the cake without crumbs or batter clinging to it.

If you store the leftovers covered, the cake will get very moist on top; use it quickly or freeze it.... lol... you might guess by the lack of pics here that we used it quickly... always the sign of a good recipe! *eyebrow waggling grin*

My 50th post!

And here is that troublesome but beloved doily! let's see if I can upload both pics...

Aaaaahhh, there we be... You can see how big this is going to be, since UNblocked it already covers most of the armchair's back. I've finished a couple more rows now and the pineapples are almost all done, the fans much fannier... er... that sounds weird... well anyhow, lol... this is a twenty-six row doily and I am almost finished with row twenty-three. I took a break from crocheting last night but maybe tonight I can finish it.
We'll see what mischief I can get into after that! I already have another recipe to post, this time for Banana Walnut Cake. First though, I have to walk Her Tiny Highness, the Ladybug *Guard Princess!(tm)*

Monday, June 16, 2008

*slides in singing like Al Jolson*

"DOIIIILLLYYYY, how I love ya, how I love ya, my dear old doily! I put a million miles of string in it's true *spoken in that Jolsony way* but EVVVryone SMILES when they look at you!!"

Blogger won't let me upload pics today, but I am making good progress on the doily. It is getting quite large! And most unfortunately, my hands and wrists are getting quite swollen... *sigh* Tis amazing that as my hands remember more and more what to do and how to do it, as I pick up speed and my gauge starts to even out, my wrists get more and more swollen. It shouldn't be that way, and yet it is.

I think it's the pineapples. Making all those chains puts a real strain on me, I guess, because I have to keep the thread under pressure to keep the gauge even. When you're doing solid crochet, the fabric you're creating does some of the holding for you--but these chains are so airy and flimsy that my hands have to do it all.

So anyhow, even though I absolutely love to crochet and am getting a huge kick out of creating something so lacy, I guess I have to finish this doily and then give my wrists a rest. When I start crocheting again, I guess I have to be careful what kind of pattern I choose.

Oh, lol, and the blotchiness doesn't bother me anymore. This was the best fifty cents I ever spent! Well, a dollar if you count the magazine. *smile*

Pics when Blogger cooperates again!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day

Hello! Today is Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, and since the gardener who hosts it is 0ne of the people who inspired me to start gardening again, I thought I would participate. Here is a link to her post.

My garden is a baby garden right now, only days old. I concentrated on herbs since I am completely new to the Wichita, Kansas climate. I admit, the hailstorms day after day in June have kinda taken me aback and I hesitated to plant anything... but the flowers all around the apartment are doing fine despite the lashing gulley-washers and their bonus rounds of hailstones, so I gathered my courage and took a chance. This is my lil garden, perched on the grate that covers a basement window. The apartment manager had covered the grate with an unused area mat and offered me the space. It isn't pretty, but it will do!

My one and only actual flower was in with the half-price herbs at the grocery store; it has a lovely enticing scent and I'm wondering if it might be heliotrope. I love the deep purple. Each bloom is only about half the size of my baby fingernail; they grow in clusters like verbena--and yanno, it's been so many years since I gardened anywhere but the desert that it could be a verbena and I wouldn't know, lol...

Tis growing in a pot with Italian Parsley and Golden Marjoram. The parsley was mislabeled as triple-curled, but it's obviously flat-leaf.

In keeping with my only-the-best-will-do ethic (lol!) my new plant stand was fished off the top of the laundromat's dumpster. It was a newspaper and leaflet stand in its former incarnation. I cut off the cardboard box that made the top, dusted the stand off, and voila! A folding plant stand to hold my herbs! The pot on the top has Greek Oregano and French Tarragon--tarragon is one of the very few plants I ever pay full price for without complaining much--and I don't know if you can tell from the photo, but the oregano had already tried to bloom. I pinched the stems back---but hey, if I hadn't, I would have had Greek Oregano blooming for GBBDay, too. *grin* The pic looks a lil wonky cuz the camera tilted a lil... I have that problem with my hands, lol.... but also because the shelf is slanted towards the back of the frame, so the green pot is tilted backwards. Oh well, a definite slant makes for better drainage, right? And certainly herbs need good drainage. *crosses fingers and hopes on that one!*

The big pot has my spinach, Mesclun mix, and butternut squash seedlings. It's about a week and a half old, and the seedlings were up in four days. That surprised me!

The lil pots were the herb pots. I can never leave well enough alone *sheepish smile* I had leftover potting soil and so I planted more seeds--parsley, basil, basil, dill, and cilantro. Yes, when you have five pots and four packets of seeds you end up with things like basil, basil. It works for me, anyhow. Hope you have the same good luck! *cheeky grin*

One of the things I didn't expect was the amount of shade this lil bitty garden is going to get. Squash was probably not the wisest choice. At the time, I didn't believe that anything on the south side of a building would be shady in the summer, but there ya have it... I'm TOTALLY directionally dyslexic and this is the north side of the property.

Not to mention the east side of the building.

*chagrined look* Ooops, lol... So, um, I'll keep ya posted on whether or not the morning sun is enough to grow real squash. Here I thought I had a southern location with a hive of wild bees only a hundred feet away... well, I have the wild bees, at least till honey starts dripping into the building's walls. (Sometimes apartment managers who are new don't reeeeally know as much as they think they do when they decide something is not a problem, eh?) Here's hoping the bees don't sting anyone; we have a couple tenants who are allergic. But in the meantime... well... I planted squash!

Here's the view from the back door of the apartment building, out to the side of the property behind us. The daylilies are so nice! I didn't even know they were there until yesterday, since the (huge) yard is kinda overgrown and the foliage didn't show. This is the same yard that had the clematis hidden beneath another vigorous vine--no idea what the bully is, something with five leaflets--and I'm not sure, but I think I might be the only one who saw it bloom a couple weeks ago. The first blossom was the size of my hand and deep purple; after that they were progressively smaller (the same color) and the secret show was over in less than a week. The roses have all gone by in this neighborhood now, and the irises as well; even the peonies are done... so it's daylily time. I love it!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

It doesn't work if it isn't ugly

Nothing is ever lost... this is something I learned to make probably fifteen years ago or more. At that time, I had the unfortunate (but highly flattering! lol) experience of making these and having them go unused... the people I made them for thought they were too pretty to use. Ooops! lol! So now I know... make 'em ugly!!

So you might be wondering what this is all about. Gryph came back from vacation to a VERY rough time at work, and needed an outlet. I wondered at first what to do... and then I remembered!!!

Vaguely humanoid shape: Cut two from an old pillowcase, the weirder or uglier, the better.

Save the scraps and cut them into thin strips, straight or curvy doesn't matter. Add in some pieces of yarn or crochet thread, the same length as the thin strips. Remember, the goal is ugly.

Flip your humanoid inside out (eeep!) and stitch it together, leaving an opening. I left the head open... won't do that again, but it did work. When you come to the end of the stitching, pivot the humanoid around and restitch the whole thing. It's gonna get a lot of wear-n-tear, so double seams are a good thing. (If you want to leave the opening in the side--a much better idea!-- then place the 'do in between the layers of the head with the "hair" inside the body and the transparent tape part sticking out. Make sure you don't accidentally stitch any hair into the side seams.)

Any place that seemed vulnerable to me got multiple seams. This is the crotch.

Flip the humanoid inside right. A crochet hook comes in handy when you can't find your Purple Thang.

Now make hair. Take all your assorted scrappy strips and the yarn or thread pieces and arrange them in a 'do. Lay a piece of transparent tape over the bottom, pressing it down to catch as much as you can. Carefully flip the 'do over and tape the other side.

Stuff the humanoid pretty full, even a little tooo full, everywhere except near the opening. Leave that empty, because as you stitch it shut, your hands will naturally move the stuffing into place. I used Cluster Stuff this time and I just love it! Couldn't find the Morning Glory website, so I give you a pic instead of a link.

Once your humanoid is stuffed and the hair is made, place the hair in the opening so that the tape is below the stitching line (inside) and stitch it shut by hand or machine. I did it by hand, because I didn't want tape residue on my machine needle.

When I put the machine away, I was startled to find one of the little things that makes life so much nicer.

Look at that, a little cut out in the drawer so that I can lay the machine down with the thread still on it!! Now was that thoughtful design, or what?

I am truly in love with Our Beauty. This is hands down the nicest sewing machine I have EVER used---even including an Elna of the same vintage!!

When you want to
throw the phone

Or kick the desk and

Here is a little Dammit

You cannot do

Just grasp it firmly by the

And find a place to slam

And as you whack the stuffing

Yell "Dammit, Dammit,

Friday, June 13, 2008

What's up with (ow!) this??

So the wonderful thing about crocheting doilies is that they're so portable. I keep this one in a sandwich bag to keep it clean and to keep from losing the ball of thread under every chair I come across, and that means I can take it places like the laundromat.

The not-so-wonderful thing about doilies is that crocheting them makes my hands hurt. I so did not expect that from this doily!! But it is pineapples and that means one uses one's non-dominant hand to hold the doily tight while one makes chains of stitches... and my left hand is starting to hurt a lot, especially the part of my palm where the thumb connects.

I don't know if the Starwheel didn't cause this problem because I couldn't crochet on it for extended times--my eyes kept getting tired--or because it was more solid.

I took this pic of the doily at the laundromat on a sorting table. The light seems to have minimized what you can see of the tea-dying. I still haven't decided what to do about the whole splotchy issue. It bothers me less right now but I'm afraid that might just be familiarity.

Oh, and I discovered that I am making mistakes like crazy (mostly missed stitches). So far I've been able to compensate, but it's kinda weird... cuz yanno, the me I used to be would have ripped whole rows out to get to and correct even a small mistake.

The me I am today quotes Lisa, "oh well, no one will notice," and then goes off to rub her sore hand muscles. *wry smile*

Thursday, June 12, 2008


1. What I was doing 10 years ago:
Taking care of a woman who was in her early nineties. She was bedbound and blind, and had mostly lost her ability to talk, but she would "quilt" her bedcovers for hours. I used to sing to her and we would have conversations as best we could... I never could tell what she said, but she always seemed happy to see me.

One day I was sitting by her bedside singing as I was beading an amulet bag, and the thread kept snarling and breaking despite Thread Heaven. Finally in utter frustration I said to her that my thread kept tangling and breaking and that I *just* didn't know what to do!! And this woman with over eighty years' quilting and sewing experience said one of the last clear sentences of her life: "You have bad thread."

It was a lightbulb moment for sure--I had never realized there could be bad thread! I thought it was just me... I switched threads and voila, problem solved!

I've always treasured that moment. The gift of her experience came welling through her terrible case of aphasia and senility; she spoke despite all obstacles, giving a guiding light from one generation to the next, from one needleworker to another.

Bless you, darlin Gladys. I like to think you're quilting the night sky now, and the cloud patterns. Thank you for the gift; I'll cherish it all my life.

2. What 5 things are on on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order):
Buy potting soil. (Yes, I *do* owe y'all a pic of my seedlings! Not only that, I rescued a wire rack to hold my flowerpots and I owe you a pic of that, too. Um, maybe I should put batteries in the camera, too.)

Vacuum the apartment.

Make watermelon popsicles. (Mash up fresh watermelon, pour it and the resulting juice into popsicle molds, freeze for several hours. Best popsicles I've ever had! And they're non-fat with no added sugar, since they're just fruit.)

Print pics of a friend and her dog, and take them to her. I would email them, but gmail has snarkily decided I am spamming her by sending pics! I have been censored. *shocked look*

Do laundry.

3. Snacks I enjoy:
Hmmmm... this doesn't say, "my favorite food" just the ones I enjoy..... hooo, that's a long list lol!

I love sweet stuff and I think fresh sweet cherries are a WONDERFUL snack, as are berries. *grins* The mulberries off the shrub out back were TRULY enjoyable, as much for the unexpectedness of them as anything (blackberries taste better, but oh the sweetness of knowing a tree is gifting you with food!!). Fresh peaches, too, and apricots.

Dried fruit is wonderful. For eating as a snack I love dried pineapple, dried apricots, and dried papaya. The rest of the universe of dried fruits I love to bake with---and yes, lol, then those baked goods become a snack I enjoy!

Donuts and other pastries. Mmmmmmmmm!!

I'm not at allllll sure chocolate counts as a snack... I am thinking tis more along the lines of "the staff of life".... *cheeky grin*

I also enjoy salty snacks, not popcorn so much as chips and nuts. I have to limit my salt, though.

4. Things I would do if I was a billionaire:
Be a philanthropist!! I have always wanted to make the world run MY WAY, lol, and what better way to get a taste of that than to have the money to fund my favorite causes? *eyebrow waggle*

I've long had this lottery fantasy of havng enough money to set my birth family up with houses, cars, college funds, healthcare, and then having enough money to do the same for other people. And OH! to have my own huge community farm!!!! I could make an organic farm, self reliant energy- and water-wise, and hire people at a good wage to live on it, tend it, run the farm store. With that kind of money, I could do it more than once, have community farms in several areas, make them the kind of places you could bring your kids and friends and spend the day at.

This is my favorite fantasy, yanno? A big farm with pick-your-own berry patches and flower gardens, with animals to be petted and with picnic areas, with seasonal produce to buy from the farm store--and also things like fresh cheeses, yogurt, milk, pies, jams, fresh eggs, all those old-fashioned things!

Then of course we cannot forget the herbal products, wreaths, vinegars, sachets, soaps, etc; the wool; the feathers; the grape and berry vines ready to be woven into wreaths and baskets; the preserved autumn leaves; the dried flowers; the stick trellises; heck, even the bagged compost outside the door.....

Most of all, what I would want people to come to my community farm for? The peace, that glorious peace that lives in the countryside and comes when people are doing right by the land they stand upon, work upon, make their homes upon.

5. Places I have lived:

The Arizona desert, both in the city (metro Phoenix) and out in the country (on unimproved land).

Washington state, both the Puget Sound area and the Olympic Peninsula.

Oklahoma outside Oklahoma City.

Wichita, Kansas.

This has been fun! Thank you Dawn, for including me!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Ask, and ye shall receive....

So I've been complaining because we just don't have enough shelves... ask, they say, and ye shall receive... they just forgot to mention you might need to do a little work first!

I found a medicine cabinet in the trash of a building that's being renovated. It was brand new--brand new!!--but someone had dropped it. The shattered mirror was still inside it.

One of my neighbors helped me rescue it; she and I cleaned it out, saved the shelves, and took off the door and magnetic catch. One hinge had pulled away from the door, leaving it irreparable. I saved the hardboard from the middle for another project and ditched the broken frame, leaving me with this very nice brand new empty cabinet.

It had a problem.

This broken corner is the clue that let me know someone had dropped it. I dealt with it the easiest way possible:
Looks just fine upside down, eh? *grin*

It works just fine, too! The shelves were not on very strong supports, but it works well enough. It's holding canned goods, with my small cookbooks on the very top--yanno, that used to be the bottom. *grin*

When I went to the hardware store, I took my time and explored, and eventually I came to an aisle FILLED with small plastic drawer-type bins.... and voila! I found sturdy metal shelf supports, bigger than the ones it came with but still fitting the same size holes. Hardware stores are SUCH amazing places! I sure like ours! And now my new lil shelf unit is perfect for tuna and beans, canned soup and fruit, and even (shhh! don't let the doglet hear) a big box of Milkbones!

oh my gosh!!

We have achieved lettuce sproutage!! I planted a 14 inch pot with butternut squash, spinach, and mesclun lettuce mix on Friday, and the lettuce sprouted Monday! Pics later...

In the meantime, Gryph has gone to Arizona for vacation. Curly decided he needed A Big Adventure... it evidently straightened his curly cockade (!!!!) but he has enjoyed his time with Gryph. It started at the bus station....

He charmed the attendants...

And then he passed the time waiting for the bus to arrive with a companion. The conversation was, by all accounts, deep and soulful.

I'm certainly looking forward to the pics he will bring with him when he arrives home Wednesday afternoon!

*blink* Um, oh yeah... hope he brings Gryph with him, too! *cheesy grin*