Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sunday Confessional

Its been a long time since I felt the need to confess anything.  But since its Sunday, and I find myself with some free time (actually, I should be cleaning but this is procrastination at its finest)  I'll confess away...

I dislike old people feet.  Strongly dislike.  I know, someday I'll HAVE old people feet but I will feel sorry for anyone who has to touch them.  As a nurse, I've dealt with a lot of feet, but I just get the heebie jeebies from nasty old people feet.  In fact, feet don't thrill me in any form; young, old, whatever.  I could get into descriptive words here and talk about just why I don't like feet, especially old people feet, but I think that's highly unnecessary.  It'll just creep us both out. 

 Let the season begin!
I started my canning season yesterday. Well...technically I started it in June with the strawberry jam I made, but now I'm hauling out the big guns... the pressure canner.  Yesterday I picked 5 1/2 lbs of green beans out of my garden and decided to do something with them.  I found a recipe for dilled green beans and I just happened to have the dill in my backyard so I whipped up a batch.  Because there was vinegar in the recipe, I didn't need to use a pressure canner, and a hot water bath was sufficient.  Today, however, I'll be canning plain ol' beans so I have to fill the giant monster canner and get to work. 

Last year a friend gave us a huge bag of pears from their yard.  There weren't perfect because they weren't sprayed and they were all a funny shape, but they sure made good canned pears.  Some things just aren't worth the effort or time to can... like corn.  You can buy it at the store for less than 50 cents a can, but cut that stuff off of a cob and freeze it, and nothing tastes better in the winter! 

If you've never canned anything before, you should give it a try.  You'll amaze yourself!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Ode to Lake Michigan

OK so its not really an ode... I'm not motivated to write poetry today.  But I just returned from a swim in Lake Michigan and I must say, those of us who live along the lakeshore really take it for granted.  Beautiful white sand beaches, warm fresh water lake, the list could go on.  And its right up the road! 

I grew up in a house where we went to Lake Michigan a LOT!  We used to camp a great deal and the campground was located right over a dune.  It seems like I was at the beach more than not.  And then, when I was 9, we put in a pool, and beach time abruptly stopped.  Mind you, I loved that pool too!  I spent every sunny day either in it or laying out along side of it.  That pool figures prominently in many of my best memories.  We swam in that pool until about 5 years ago when my mom sold the house.  (That's another story.) 

Thus began our trips back to the beach.  Yes, its sandy, and its a little inconvenient to pack up everything you think you might need while at the beach:  beverages in a cooler, a book, an ipod, towels, chairs, water toys, etc.  But to have such beauty at our back door really is quite a blessing! 

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

More Green things

Another trip to the garden...

compare these two photos:

This is the same watermelon, one week apart.  Amazing!  ( I suppose its not really amazing, as everyone's watermelons do the same thing but still...)
Now to have enough patience to let it fully ripen.  One year, I was in such a huge hurry to pick a watermelon that it wasn't ripe and tasted terrible. 

A few of the cabbage plants are doing quite well:

While others are NOT doing so well.  I'm sure its a different type of cabbage, but apparently its very tasty to cabbage loopers and other bugs. Take a look:

Can you see all those holes?  And there isn't a cabbage head in there at all.  I'm just viewing this as free food for the bugs. 

And then there is this plant,  which I think is a cantaloupe, but there is no fruit on it.  Not even little tiny ones with blooms attached.  All just male flowers.  But the plant itself is going crazy!

Its been a really good year to have a garden, weather-wise.  Last year the weather was very cold and rainy but this summer has been ideal!  Very hot and sunny! 

Here's what I brought home from the garden today:

Yes, that's a handful of beans but next week, there'll be more than I can deal with.  Better get the canner ready!

Saturday, July 10, 2010


I find myself with an unexpected, but very welcomed, day off today.  My employer let me know, as I was in the shower, that they were overscheduled and didn't need my services.  Darn it!  I could have really used more sleep.  But, since I was already showered, I headed to the farmer's market and bought some blueberries (which seem very early to me) and lettuce.  Two things I don't grow myself.  Blueberry crisp is cooling on the stovetop and I'm on the computer.  Ahhhh.   I also bought some perennials - cheap! - and will be planting those later today. 

My oldest daughter leaves for college in a little more than a month.  We need to begin shopping for dorm stuff... on sale of course.  I started making her a rug about a week ago and I'm trying to make it in her school's colors but its not quite there.  Oh well.  It'll do. 
The colors are supposed to be maroon and gold.  I guess if you squint just right, it could pass for maroon and gold.   Right?  Right? 

Here's a close up of the weave.  Some of these fabrics used to be my bed sheets.  Very green of me wouldn't you say?


One thing that makes me happy is checking out my garden and seeing what's growing.  I stopped up at my Big Garden yesterday and harvested lots of basil.
I made gobs of pesto:  pesto with pine nuts, pesto with walnuts, pesto with lemon basil, pesto with regular basil - (you should be saying this like Bubba from Forest Gump when talking about shrimp). 

But what made me REALLY happy was this:
Watermelon!  I actually took this picture about 5 days ago and yesterday, when I checked on them, they had doubled in size.  I literally cheered right there in the community garden.  Thankfully, no one else was there to give me odd looks.  Hopefully, they'll survive to "adulthood" so we can enjoy them.  Nothing is better than homegrown fruits and veggies!

And finally, my daughter posted this link on my facebook.  She thought I would like it and I think you will too.  Read the whole thing, its a little long but so funny!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


My niece has a link to a website that I thought I'd share.  Its called Hooked on Houses. There are all kinds of pictures of houses:  celebrities houses, houses used on movie sets, etc. But there's a really fun section called Bad MLS photos.  And these guessed it... pictures that are taken by realtors in the hopes of selling a house.  Funny!  Go check it out!