Thursday, July 28, 2011

The big reveeeeaaaalll ...

Hey all.  It's been an insane week - my mom's birthday (guess who volunteered to cook?), we're in the process of buying a new car - well, new to us anyway; big event this weekend, and then just for fun I got pulled into a project by my old boss.  A project working on something I love, but also a project that had to be done flawlessly or else I would have been messing with a lot of BIG important people's BIG money. No pressure, right?  It's just money! (gulp)
Right in the middle of muddling my way through, complete with chewing of fingernails and pulling of hair, my computer screen freezes.  F$#^.  For 5 minutes I tried everything I could think of (i.e., I unplugged it, then plugged it back in) Nada.  Starting to panic.  Starting to envision people I work with figuring out that I have no idea what I'm doing.  Starting to envision my babies in rags, living under a highway overpass somewhere, because Mama couldn't pull this off.
You stupid m&%#%f&** machine, cut the s#@! and start working right f#$%ing now!
At this point the mild mannered professor who I didn't know was working in his office quietly pulled his door shut.
Luckily I got invited into old boss' shwanky-shwank-shwank office and got to work there for the day.  Their computers work, without requisite swearing.  It was magical.

Anyway, before all that, Mooch returned home last weekend and I got to reveal her re-vamped room to her.  She looooooves it.  

Here it is before - ok all that crap on the bed isn't usually there, I was prepping to paint and had taken stuff down, and then realized I should probably take a "before" shot.  How bad is that white wicker shelf?

This is her little wicker vanity, and a chair I found at Goodwill that I've been meaning to re-do.

And, after!

I still have to sew a little cushion for the chair, but I'm so happy that it matches the vanity now.  To the left, on the footboard of her bed, I hung up a little organizer for all of her cards from friends and other stuff that tends to get lost.
Because her room is so tiny, I like to minimize how much she has hanging up so it doesn't look too cluttered.
Speaking of cluttered, she loves purses.  The child owns probably 20, and they are all stuffed with her junk treasures that she refuses to get rid of.  

I screwed hooks into the side of her bookshelf so she could keep them hung up and out of the way.  I also added a hook to the shelf above her vanity, to hang up her favorite necklaces.  I went hook crazy.  I'm a crazy hooker.

Butterbean checking it out.
My artistically talented friend, Mrs. German, (name has been changed to protect the not-so-innocent) added this, since Mooch's favorite movie is "The Princess Bride"

How amazing is that?!?!
Be well ....

Friday, July 22, 2011

The One Where My Thoughts Come Rushing Towards You In A Horrifying Torrent.

I'm going to attempt to not comment on the weather, since we all know that it is hotter than satan's taint out there.  115 heat index here today.  

What I will comment on is - despite the evidence right SMACK in front of their noses (aka, the burning hot steering wheel, all vegetation burnt, food prices soaring) people are still not standing up for our Earth.  If I hear one more person deny global warming while sweat drips down the front of them I may have to re examine my "harm none" policy.  The Mister and I were discussing this last night and he said despite recycling containers being placed around his work, some people don't use them "on principle".

"On what FUCKING principle would that be, other than being an assmonkey?"
"Calm down.  *I* use them.  I'm just saying that some people don't, to make a point."
"To make the point that their mothers should have drown them at birth?  I'm not getting this."
"You know how people are, they think if they vote Republican then they should be against all that, Obama, etc."
"Do you shoot them?  Or maybe just Taser them.  One way or another, these people need the stupid knocked out of them."
"Yes, I shoot them.  For not recycling."
"Well it would certainly start working on overpopulation"

It's true, we solve many a world problem in our little house.

Our little house.  I'm trying to do grand things there.  I need to work on the interior, to get it all Mama-fabulous, so when I'm holed up in there during the winter dreaming about my garden, I can at least do it in a pretty place.  
Mooch will be back from vacation tomorrow and while I have missed her terribly, as has Butterbean and Daddy, the feeling is not mutual.  She could barely be convinced to come to the phone to talk to us, what with being on the boat within 5 ft of dolphins, swimming at the beach, and running my parents around like crazy. (SUCKAAAAHHHSSSS!!!)
And ... she is coming back to ... drum roll please ....
a completely re-vamped room!

OK, maybe not completely re-vamped - but I did paint one wall purple, her favorite color, and my artistically talented friend is coming over tonight to add a little flair to it.  I also got a gauzy canopy for her bed, and painted the little chair to match her vanity, and did some other cute stuff.  Pics to come soon.
When I envision the rest of the house, I see this -

Sigh.  One day.  Until then I'm re-working rooms one by one, trying to breathe a little more life into them.

The Mister has developed some sort of allergy to eggs, we think.  He has gotten violently ill the last 2 times he has had them, with me and the kids having the same eggs and feeling fine.  Have you ever heard of someone developing a food allergy at 40?  He has a doctors appointment next week to be referred to a gastroentorologist.  

Oh, and these little bastards have found my squash

The lovely squash bug.  I picked a zucchini the other day and it was covered with baby squash bugs, which made me shudder and squeal and throw the poor zucchini violently to the ground.  Which of course made no sense and probably let the little buggers crawl over to the next squash and keep going.  I'm not good at being surprised like that. *tangent time*

I had bought a bag of mulch at Home Despot and thrown it on the lawn next to the tree I was planning to mulch around until I got the kids to bed.  Got the kids down to nap, and came out to start working.  Picked up the bag of mulch and something fell off the back - a BABY BLACK SNAKE.  It was dead, it's little head crushed - so I must have thrown the bag right on it.  Ooops.  I personally am terrified of snakes but I would never intentionally hurt one.  
I took a shovel and flicked the snake into the street - then realized, if this was a baby, then potentially mama snake was somewhere nearby.  But I had to mulch around that damn tree.  I did the only logical thing you can do - I took a rake and poked it all around the base of the tree to make sure there were no more, then very tentatively started spreading the mulch and weeding, all the while ready to bolt if I saw any slithery things.  I was just about to reach for a weed when something moved, which later turned out to be one of my daylily leaves - and at the same time someone down the street slammed a car door.  I screamed and ran off my own lawn, into the street.  SEE???  No sense.  

In my defense, this post was labeled appropriately.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

She's Leaving :-(

For 3 days ... my oldest baby ... will be at the beach, with her grandparents, but without ME.  Please excuse me while I throw myself a massive pity party.

My Moocher Poocher will be an hour and a half away, and I will have to deal.  And I don't like it.  I miss her big ol' lips already.

Sweet As A Potato!

This is why you love me ... I do important fact-checking type stuff and follow up with relevant details.  And I'm cute.
Mother Earth News, my favoritest magazine besides the almighty Oprah, has an article this month about growing sweet potatoes.  And I did a double take when I read that you should NOT eat your sweet potatoes after you harvest them for at least a few months.  Wha - ???  But I was going to be all smug-like and serve them at Thanksgiving!
If you can keep your potatoes at 80 degrees for a week after harvesting, they will "cure" - grow a second protective outer skin, and this way you can safely store them for a few months until they're ready to eat, without risk of rotting.  Have you ever gotten a sweet potato from the store, cut into it, and there is this weird dried-out spongy-looking center?  That is the result of un-cured potatoes.  Potatoes when they are harvested and cured are a living tuber, and will be right up until you cook them.  Un-cured potatoes die, and when you see that weird center, that is rot happening from the inside out.  Yuck.  Freshly harvested sweet potatoes aren't that sweet, and are pretty starchy - you have to give them time to finish sweetening.  The article states the earliest you should think about eating them is December. (insert sad face)

Speaking of yuck, it will be at least 100 degrees here on Friday.  Our Earth is heating up, no doubt.  I've resolved to go even more crunchy because of this - I need to be better about planning wash days to coordinate hanging out wash, I need to break out the bike more, and I really need to get on installing our second rain barrel.  Our barrel has been dry going on a week now - I'm hoping the thunderstorms in our forecast are a real possibility.

Mooch is headed down to the beach with her grandparents on Wednesday, and staying over for two nights.  Butterbean is convinced she's going too - I'm not looking forward to the minute she realizes she's stuck at home with boring Mama and Daddy. And she's going to miss her sister - lookit these two

*Photos courtesy our weekly living room dance party*
And my new addiction is Moon To Moon - she's giving me the inspiration I need to feather my nest a bit more!
Be well

Friday, July 15, 2011

I'm Baaaaaack .....

Hey there lovers!
After my week off I got back to work and was absolutely clobbered with a bunch of stuff, so I am just now getting back into the blogosphere.  The week off was good, although it could have been more relaxing.  I also had to lay down some ground rules for the anklebiters of our neighborhood.  All of a sudden our house is THE house to be at, which I'm fine with - but seriously, apparently no one teaches their kids manners anymore, whatsoever.  Among the standout quotes:
"I'm hungry. What do you have to eat?"
"Ewww, I don't like that.  What else do you have?"
"I forgot my towel, on purpose.  I'll just use one of yours"
"Where's my lunch?"

I swear to god.  I started out nice and my the end of the day I was stomping around with a war face on, and all the kids were scared, which I was fine with.  If it keeps them from running through my house dripping wet because "I was hot!" then so be it.  And seriously, our pool is a crappy rinky-dink plastic pool I got for about $15 at KMart, not a freakin in-ground monstrosity with built-in jacuzzi, and they still flock over.  Whatever.

Soooo ... I had this fear of making pickles.  It just seemed super complicated and like you had to have 2 uninterrupted hours to make it come out right.  I planted our one little cucumber plant thinking I'd have enough for salads etc, but not excess.
Zac chased a rabbit into our garden last week and trampled two of my zucchini plants (they are fine, though).  After he squashed them I discovered this :

About 8 full grown cucumbers, just hanging out.  I had already collected a basketful 2 days earlier and was kind of wondering what to do with those - it was PICKLE OR DIE time.
And I did it!!

 3 jars of dill hamburger chips, 3 jars of sandwich slices, and I had 1/2 jar leftover that became refrigerator pickles.  And the big, beautiful (seriously if I get married again I would carry them down the aisle) dill seed heads came right out of the garden.
Here's the perpetrators of my insanity.  Sure, they LOOK cute ...

Don't be fooled.
Our little mystery vine has fruited.  Did I say little?  This sucker has snaked it's way through my neighbors fence, and because she's a cool lady she's fine with it.  When I saw the fruit I told her it is shaped kind of like a butternut squash - she said the ones on her side are definitely pumpkin-shaped.  So mystery vine may be TWO mystery vines!
Here's whats happening on my side of the fence:

 And next to it, something else that I didn't plant - some sunflowers coming up below our feeder

 I had this idea to grow sweet potatoes, but I got discouraged because everything I read said they spread like crazy.  So I found an article about growing sweet potatoes in a barrel - all I needed was a sweet potato slip.  So I suspended one on toothpicks over a jar of water and put it in the sun, just like suggested - it rotted.  And the next one, and the next one.  I gave up.  Butterbean is my sweet potato queen, and I had picked her up some at the Co-op and had them in our pantry.  I reached by them one day and yes - one great big tendril, about 8" long, had sprung out of that thing!
I ran to Home Despot and got a cheap ($12) black plastic trash can and some organic potting soil.  I used a very sharp knife and cut out semicircles all over it, so the potatoes would get good sun and drainage.  I put about 4 inches of soil in the bottom, dropped the potato in, and covered it with more soil.  The conventional wisdom is that you add more soil anytime the sprout is 6" above the soil - obviously I need to go pick up more!

So excited for this.  When you are ready to harvest you just dump the barrel out, how easy is that?  Our family loves sweet potatoes!

  Peas are gone.  I pulled them out and harvested what was left as starters for next year.  In their place went a cantaloupe plant generously donated by a neighbor, 3 rescued pepper plants, and some heirloom lettuce.  I want to find some little corner to put in more radishes.  (Pickled radishes!!)

 One of our dumpster-rescued pepper plants is going ca-raaaaazy.  I have no idea how hot these are, the Mister will be recruited as taste tester/guinea pig.  I can make some salsa with them and THESE

Holy effing hell, I am going to have a buttload of tomatoes.  Most of the time this makes me want to dance, and then sometimes I wake up in a cold sweat wondering what the hell I'm going to do with a ton or two of tomatoes.  Speaking of which ..

This lil heirloom tomato plant has no home :-(  He is an orphan. Once he had a name (Blondkopfchen?  Black Tula?  Peacevine Cherry? Green Zebra??)  He now has no name, and no home, because some fool forgot that her little garden could not possible handle 80 gazillion tomato plants.  I swear every time I walk by him he looks at me with this pathetic little look, waving his sad lil leaves like, "Whyyy??  Why don't you love meeeee??"  I think I'll kick my now-done bean plant out of it's big roomy planter, and move Lil Dude in.  I can't take his complaining anymore.
So what did I miss?  Who's pregnant?  Who fell off the wagon, and who climbed back on?  Who was forced into a psychiatric facility?  Catch me up!

Friday, July 1, 2011

When Good Ideas Go Bad

So much hope for this lil' project, and so much FAIL came out of it.  To re-cap, we use cloth napkins a lot - and we're a bunch of messy eaters, so our napkins that some idiot (ME) bought in white, were stained like a mo fo.  I bleached them - nothing.  Maybe lightened the stains a little, but I didn't want to have to keep bleaching them, so I thought, why not dye them?  They were still in physically good condition, no tears or anything, so why not?  And why not use a natural dye?  Hey, they're already stained from a gazillion tea party spills, why not dye them with tea?
I looked up tea-dying online and found some tips, gathered my materials, and set forth

Here they are before:

 God, fighting back a teabagging joke.

Anddddd .... the finished product.  Blergh.

 Didn't cover the stains.  And they now look like they're permanently dirty.  Blergh indeed.
I'm thinking of using them in some kind of crafty way - maybe cloth flowers?  That antique-y look would work there.  Hmm.
And here, something that came out soooo much better.  The finished birdbath in it's new home

 It's a bit shallow, but the birdies don't seem to careI spray painted this with Krylon all-weather paint in Hammered Grey, which is kind of fabulous.  In fact, I then looked at this beautiful iron planter that I had, which was great except for the color.  It was painted hunter green, and it was fug.  Hmmm ...

How cute is that?!?!  I'm planting it today with some red,white, and blue flowers that I scored from Home Despot's dumpster, along with two gorgeous hanging baskets.  I mean, seriously - 

 I also got some perennials, and I'm thinking about adding a rain garden to the front of the house to catch the run off from another downspout.
Any plans for the holidays?  I'm convincing the Mister to get over his grill phobia and we're BBQ'ing it, then heading to my aunt's to watch fireworks.
Peace, love, and plants! :-)
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...