Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Garden News

Our garden is humming along. We're still feasting on beets and beet greens, plus pulled a few carrots so far. The tomatoes are blooming and there are a few green ones. Our strawberry bed is doing well also and we're slowly harvesting a few strawberries here and there. Hopefully by next year, the plants will have filled in to the point we'll get enough to actually make a pie. Perhaps strawberry jam in the future too!

Our locksmith work has been very slow..only a few jobs in a month. Not sure what's going on but evidently banks are not foreclosing like they did before. The President is encouraging banks to give out loans to unqualified buyers again which started the whole nightmare in the beginning.  There is a huge unspoken backlog of delinquent homeowners. Kinda scary when you think of it.
With all the other huge problems that exist in our country, this is on the back backburner. Just simmering below the surface.

Alan's given me a few scares this last month with low blood sugar. Once we couldn't get it up to within normal and I drove him up to the emergency. I parked the car and he took his blood sugar reading again..it was normal. We turned around and went home as the emergency parking lot was full and it was after 11 at night.. Not good to go so up and down. 
Now we're trying  to be sure he gets food every 4 hours and have regular meals. He's the kind of guy who gets so involved with whatever project he's on, he forgets to eat. He's always been able to take care of this on his own but as he's getting older, needs a little help now. Since that last episode, he's been better and is sure to eat something before he goes to bed in the evening also.

last but not least, I am sharing a easy peasy recipe. This is one that is straight from the 70s. I made this back in the day as a newly wed. Its still a goodie and simple to make.

 Hamburger Pie

Brown a 1 lb. of hamburger and some onion in a pan. Cook until meat is brown and onion is cooked.
Add 1 can of tomato soup and 1 can of green beans, drained. Mix and place in casserole. Frost with  mashed potatoes, top with grated cheese. Bake about 20-25 minutes at 350 degrees.
This is very good the second day also. You could add other vegetables to it, maybe a drained can of mixed veggies, or a can of mushrooms.  Whatever your family likes!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Fairy Moss Gardens

I know this isn't a great photo..its very hard for my little digital camera to do close ups..but this is a moss garden I made about 2 weeks ago, using a glass cooky jar. Cyndy sent me a selection of moss and lichen from North Carolina. Her blog is called  By the Light of the Moon  She has a wonderfully beautiful blog so hope you will take a look after you're reading mine. She and her husband have moved to the woods of North Carolina and she sells moss and other forest goodies in her Etsy shop..which is also  called By the Light of the Moon...I spray the garden every other day or so with spring water to keep the moss happy and so far its all growing well. I used a orchid blend of organic soil, layered the bottom with stones for drainage. The days I water, I leave the lid off so it won't get too moist.
Moss and fairy gardens have become quite popular. Cyndi mails the moss, etc. out and it survives quite nicely. She mailed out a selection to school children in Arizona so they could experience what a woodland forest is like in their desert community.

Here is an example of one of the listings...Green Variety Fresh Forest Fairy Moss...there are others on Etsy who create accessories for fairy gardens such as this darling little Fairy Door

These type of gardens would be wonderful as a family project for children. I know you can't see it in my photo of ours but there is a wee little frog peaking out from a grotto of sorts.

Monday, April 22, 2013

More improvements, and a new computer!

We're continuing working on the strawberry bed and Alan constructed this frame to go over the raised bed. The sun in the summer can be brutal. We later covered it with shade cloth. He used PVC pipe which worked really well. We had extra timber so he cut them into sections and you can see on the right the little border he came up with. I like it. We've never done much with this area of the back yard but its coming along nicely, I think.
Alan and the boys built the retaining wall  after we moved in, some 8 years ago now. Looking at it, its amazing that they accomplished so much. Our backyard was a gravel pit, before we moved in.

Here was the yard before we put in the raised beds, solar panels, clothes line,
etc. The little orange tree froze the second winter. Now it's been replaced by a peach and nectarine tree.
 The solar panels are wonderful and our electric bill has been running about .98 cents a month!

We had a job down in San Diego County and took the back country way home. This is looking down into Santee. There is much open land in California, once you get away from the crowded coast. Many people seem to think California is paved over and really crowded, but that's only on the coast.

I got a new computer this last Saturday and have been having  fun, figuring out how to use it. Its amazing how much easier it is now and these new computers are smaller too.Today I figured out how to load photos so I'll be posting again on a regular basis!

 and finally, for  this evening, a little kitty funnie, enjoy!

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

More hot air balloons, gardening news

Early the other morning, I opened the blinds above my kitchen sink and saw this. It actually was a little larger than the photo. I thought perhaps the hot air balloon was in the road behind our house so went outside for a better look.

no, not in the road but not far off either. I got up on the retaining wall and snapped this holding the camera over my head as the wall is a high one.

It was fun watching it fill up. After it was ready, the riders got into the basket. There were probably 4 plus the handler (not sure what they call the one who has the controls)..then I watched it as it slowly rose and went north from us. At one point it was over our house.

This has become a common occurrence in the field. Evidently it's a popular spot for taking off.
Meanwhile down on earth, Alan completed the last raised bed and we put strawberry plants in it. We won't get alot of berries this year but it will be a start.

 Below are the other beds we put in last year. Now if we can get the grass mats in, we'll be all set. We have tomatoes, corn, beans, beets, potatoes and onions planted. We've been really enjoying the beet greens the last two nights, just yum. If you've never cooked beet greens, they are absolutely delicious. I just clean and steam them, and drizzle on a little red wine vinegar. Cook until they are tender, about 10 minutes or so. The beets are very good too. Gotta love beets as the entire plant is just wonderful. Full of good vitamins and minerals as well as being delicious. This is why we garden.

I'll be getting my new computer soon. My dear brother emailed me and said he was sending me funds to buy a new one! What a guy!!!

We found out yesterday about the Boston attack. Just such a terrible thing and our prayers are with those effected and their families. I pray  those responsible come to justice. The media, of course, is going crazy like they always do. All kinds of theories are being thrown around. We've decided just to ignore the media, let law enforcement do their jobs and pray for the truth to come out.

Friday, April 12, 2013


Meanwhile, Alan and I have been working very hard on our yard while the weather is so nice. Alan put in another raised bed for strawberries and we're working on the last area of our yard that was never completed earlier. The ground was never worked and it was just full of granite rocks. We both decided after doing a hard scape f  low fence border around a pink princess escallonia bush, to just cover the area with mulch, and potting plants. Escallonia does well for us in our climate and our bush is almost 6 ft. tall. As my computer isn't allowing me to download photos..here is a stock photo to give you an idea of the plant. Ours is actually a bit prettier than this one.
The rest of the garden is doing well, the raised beds are so successful. Soon I'll be harvesting beets!

Sorry I haven't posted in a little while but having trouble with my computer. Its slowly dying and as its so old, I'm working on getting another one. A new tech store is opening up here in town tomorrow and I'm planning on going over to the grand opening to see if they have a rebuilt one in my price range. If not, guess I'll have to wait until I get more money saved. We never charge anything any more but save for our bigger priced items just like my parents and grandparents did. So nice not to have credit card bills!

I'm going to have a giveaway soon to celebrate the new computer. Its about time!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Bible Gateway, Garden News and a Few Funnies

I hope everyone had a wonderful and special Resurrection Sunday this year...we topped off the evening by watching the final The Bible episode, ending with His resurrection. They continued with coming of the Holy Spirit, the conversion of the Apostle Paul and the beginnings of the Church. I felt like it was a powerful presentation, although could have been more uplifting if they had stuck more to the scriptures, and less to tradition. But all in all, it was very good and I'm hoping people will be led to read more of the Bible. A good and easy way to get into the habit is to sign up for Bible Gateway's reading plans. A section will be sent to you every day, read it faithfully and in a year you will have read the entire Bible. I've been doing this for a number of years now and find it quite helpful. On the left side of my blog, there are links plus every day you will see a selection, and can also hear it read.
Our weather has been very nice, warm in the 70s with cool nights in the 40s. Our garden is growing crazy. We've planted our crops for the spring and early summer. The beets will be harvested probably by next month as well as the peas. The corn is coming up and we planted early tomatoes which have flowers now. All my sunflowers are up and reaching to the sky. No flowers yet but soon.

The nectarine and peach trees have finished blooming and are setting fruit. Hope we don't get a frost but so far so good. You can see all the grass on the top of the retaining wall. We had so many weeds!! I say "had" because Alan and I took two days to pull them all out. It was a job but well worth it. We're planning on ordering a truckload of mulch to spread over that area to help keep them at bay. We did this about 5 years ago but its time to do it again .
The last concrete ring you see used to have apple tree in it but it never bore any fruit so after 3 years, we took it out. Alan planted a grape vine there and plans on putting up a trellis soon for it. Rather an experiment and we hope it does well. It was a bare root and is now  just starting to grow.
Finally a few funnies, haven't posted any new ones in a few weeks...