Sunday, July 27, 2014

What a week!

Sooo... it all started 10 days ago when my gum started hurting near a back tooth and I figured I had hit a corn chip the wrong way or poked my gum with something, but it kept getting worse, and worse and then I'm nearly crying in pain and I look like Marlon Brando in the Godfather, my jaw was so swollen!  Hubby got up early on Monday morning and got me into the dentist and they took an x-ray and said "abscess" and pulled the tooth!  You night think it was instant relief but noooo.  The tooth is gone but I had to wait for the antibiotics to work before the swelling and pain in the gum was gone!  Yuck, this was not fun!  Yesterday was my first completely pain free day and I am so grateful!!!

The two pints are my Armenian Cucumbers sliced
Of course things do not just stop and let you recover when you have this sort of goings on.  :)  Hubby really picked up the slack with dishes and meals (only soft food please!) and I used the little energy I had each day to work up the garden produce.  We are full bore into cucumber season now and I am ready, I think to do some pickles that I have not done before, this week I am going to try bread and butter pickles.  I have done a total of 8 quarts of dills, and Hubby has given me 6 pints of salsas (all different) to "finish off" for him, that translates to water bath for him, but he does clean up his messes so....:)

Thought I'd take you on a tour of the garden now that things are really popping, I want to start with the 'thing'. When the 'thing' first appeared it looked like a cucumber or squash and I just left it to grow in the wrong spot, but now it has these round green fruits and I was stumped.  So I typed into Google "it looked like a cuke and now has round fuzzy fruit"  - frustration will make you do strange things, but it worked, I got several hits and the "thing" turns out to be a cantaloupe!  I'm thinking the seeds may have been in the compost?  Oh well, I like cantaloupe!

The Sunflowers are just ready to bud and they are almost as tall as me!

Corn is making ears, look at all that pollen!

Black beans have purple flowers, I love this!

We will pull most of these onions this week and plant another crop, we're hoping for purples

Crookneck summer squash


and pumpkins!

The tomatoes are loaded
Just a couple of Hubby's many peppers - mostly hot!

The full view minus tomatoes and peppers in another area, the broccoli are giving us a second head and we have a second and third planting of corn coming up now, hoping for fresh corn into September!  Most of the herbs have now gone to seed so I'm going to cut them back and see if I have long enough to grow another crop, this one to preserve.  I wanted to try and fill in the herb part and see if it will be self perpetuating mostly.  Think this catches me up and ready for another week!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

I Won! It's Here!

Let me say first off - I very rarely win anything, not never, just hardly ever.  I have won the occasional $2 lottery ticket, a bingo card, ring toss at the fair - that sort of thing. 

Soooo...I am totally excited that I won the give away at Nana Chel's blog "Going Grey and Slightly Green"!  Firstly because this is a blog I've followed since day one and she is a very supportive follower of those of us who are into the Simple Living Forums, she has lots of fun stuff on her blog and has given me lots of wonderful ideas. (I can't wait til Miss Lily is old enough for the Pom Pom Tutus)  So when she had her 'blog birthday' she had a giveaway, and I entered, I was so surprised when she posted my name (and I had to double check as Kathy is not exactly an uncommon name!)  I have been eagerly awaiting the mail each day and here it is!  It came in perfect condition and it is signed by the author!  Mail (not bills) is still so much fun isn't it!?  And it has a cool stamp from another country on it!  (I don't really think I'm too easily entertained do you?)
This definitely goes in the Grandma box for Miss Lily to be read to when she comes to visit, and I can show her where Australia is on the globe and we can discuss (like I did as a child) how the people there don't fall off the earth or whether they notice that they are standing on their heads!!  :)

So - Thank You so very much to Nana Chel,  this will become a treasured keepsake with a fun story to go along with the story!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Is That Near Here?

Today I am extolling the virtues of 'day trips' to places near your home!  A lot of us are trying to be more frugal and yet have some fun, my recommendation is to look close to home.  There are probably several historic monuments/buildings/bridges near you.  There are likely to be parks and forests you haven't been to.  And to my way of thinking it is hard to beat a local museum - find out why something you've known all your life has that silly name. 

The girls in our loosely organized, self proclaimed camera club went out today and saw the waterwheels in the Noble Canal in New Plymouth Idaho. 

These 3 that we saw are still in use and it is kind of incredible when you look at the power and the ingenuity involved.


We found an old cemetery (I had some relatives who lived here in the late 1800's),   Thomas Henry Guffey and his wife Serena traveled here from Missouri and had a hand in making it the beautiful agrarian valley it is now.

 I came looking for Thomas and Serena, I was pleased to find another relative.  Anna Guffey Duggan.  I believe she is a daughter of Thomas and Serena. 

We saw the worlds biggest horseshoe (the whole town of New Plymouth is built in a horseshoe shape), ate snack foods in the air conditioned car, and stopped by a large produce market on the way home.  Oh - and we hit a few historical markers as well.  Who knew the reliably red state of Idaho was once a southern democrat stronghold?

So get on the bus, or get in the car and head out to see the local sights.  our day today cost - with gas - $10 split 3 ways!  You can't beat that with a stick!

Friday, July 4, 2014

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Summer Finally Got Here!

I'm pretty sure I mentioned some time back that when it got hot I would be moaning, so here I am-moaning!  I am drinking so much water I can hear my stomach slosh, I have the urge to eat salty foods, and I do not wear makeup as it will just run down the side of my face!  I am one of those people for whom summer is not fun, I am a naturally warm person (body temp and heartwise!!), I have reached the age and weight that although I can put on enough clothes in the winter to stay warm - I cannot decently take off enough in the summer to stay cool.  (people would probably pay me to put them back on!)  We do not have air conditioning in our home, so the constant hum you hear is the multitude of fans.  The good thing about having active sweat glands is that if I stand in front of a fan I become my own evaporative cooler!  :)

almost big enough for sweet pickles
OK - I got that out of the way, I love what the heat is doing in the garden!  June was pleasant for me but too cool for huge growth in the garden.  The past few days of heat have just made things pop!  I have 6 cucumbers and a large turnip in the fridge waiting to be eaten.  The corn is growing at a noticeable rate as are the beans, the peas are like me - happier when it is cool, but the sunflowers are getting tall.  This year more of my herbs came up but I am not sure my dill will get big enough before I need it, may have to buy some for the early pickles.  I cleaned out the pickle supplies when we went to California as the kids were all out so I am hoping to have
Waist high already
plenty of cucumbers for both sweet and dill this year.  I would also like to get enough red beets to pickle a couple of jars so we shall see.

The cherry tree was loaded this year and we ended up with a total of 5 gallons of cherries!  They weighed about 25 lbs and at the going rate in the stores that is between $80 and $100 worth of cherries!  (organic cherries were as high as $6 a pound this tree is definitely organic borderline wild) That from a tree we don't even water!  Thank goodness the cherries are done now so I can do a new manicure!  The pitted cherries filled 9 quart jars and I added medium syrup (2 cups water and 1 cup sugar) I water bathed for 20 minutes and they all sealed!  Two years ago I did some pie filling and some in heavy syrup, this year just did the one thing which is perfect for ingredients for many desserts.  I have learned my lesson, this is much easier and gives me more options when I am ready to use them.

So now I am going to drink another glass of iced tea, focus the fan on me and try not to move enough to sweat!!  Oh and by the way kittens are little heaters!!!  (And they both want to sit on me! It's some kind of conspiracy!)