Friday, August 29, 2008
Don't forget your insurance and personal information. Back up your pics on disc and take those sentimental and valuable ones with you. Putting them up high won't work as we found out in the past.
Please leave a comment and let me know where you will be. Keep in touch. Feel free to use my site to communicate as we know cell phones did not work after Katrina.
I Love All of You!!!! Be Safe.
To anyone else who may be interested, I will post as things progress.
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Freshly planted cabbage bed.
The herb wheel is coming along. I have lavender, green onions, lemon thyme, thyme, oregano, stevia, rosemary, and flowers. The dill and basil seed I planted didn't come up. Not sure why. Maybe I planted them too late?
Tuesday, August 26, 2008
Debbie Stroller is an admitted feminist and at first had a hard time reconciling her ideas to the old fashioned truly feminine art of knitting. Here is what she wrote:
"After all, I had gotten a Ph.D. in the psychology of women and had started BUST, a feminist magazine --What was I doing knitting?......It made me rethink my original feminist position. After all, it had been thirty years since the feminist revolution of the 1970s and housewives as we knew them had pretty much gone the way of the dinosaur, so why, wasn't knitting receiving as much respect as any other hobby? Why was it still so looked down on? It seemed to me that the main difference between knitting and, say, fishing or woodworking or basketball, was that knitting had traditionally been done by women. As far as I could tell, that was the only reason it had gotten such a bad rap. And that's when it dawned on me: All those people who looked down on knitting -- and housework, and housewives--were not being feminist at all. In fact, they were being anti-feminist, since they seemed to think that only those things that men did, or had done, were worthwhile." Debbie Stroller "Stitch 'n Bleep"
Why must people travel so far to discover who and what they are and what they truly enjoy. Seekers constantly journey just to find that they left the answer at their starting point. In the book "Into the Wild" by Jon Krakauer Christopher McCandless aka "Alexander Supertramp" ventured around the U.S. to discover life unfiltered. After surviving quite a while in the bush of Alaska he wrote in his journal regarding the book "Family Happiness" by Tostoy:
"He was right in saying that the only certain happiness in life is to live for others...I have lived through much, and now I think I have found what is needed for happiness. A quiet secluded life in the country, with the possibility of being useful to people to whom it is easy to do good, and who are not accustomed to have it done to them; then work which one hopes may be of some use; then rest, nature, books, music, love for one's neighbor - such is my idea of happiness. And then, on top of all that, you for a a mate, and children, perhaps - what more can the heart of a man desire?"
Unfortunately Christopher never embarked upon his new found life meanings. He starved to death before he could escape the harsh Alaskan bush. Sadly his family with whom he hadn't contacted in two years were left with their own questions to answer.
My practice work.
I know you might be thinking, "What does this really have to do with knitting?" Well I found myself sheepishly pulling out my knitting in a doctors office the other day. Almost reluctantly. Slyly peeping around the crowded room to see peoples reactions. Some people gaped at my hands moving somewhat awkwardly with their new ability. Others openly smiled at me. I would like to imagine they have fond memories of someone in their life Knitting. A grandmotherly woman next to me smiled sweetly and said, "My you're making those stitches awfully tight." I asked her quickly, "Should I make them looser?" "Oh no, your doing fine.", she replied. .....And on and on. Until the nurse opened the door and said, "Kristi?...Kristi?" and I got up and followed her into room one.
The journey is worthwhile and seeking is fine, but I do not want to spend my life seeking deep meanings only to find that I left the treasure I was seeking at home.
Saturday, August 23, 2008
This is the first Honey Girl Hybrid French Charentais Melon I actually got to eat. Due to all the rain (I believe) the first one split completely open on the vine and a bunch of beetles were having a feast. These two were beginning to split so I went ahead and picked them. It was very delicious. It smelled somewhat like cantaloupe, but the texture and taste were different. The texture was very crisp and bursting and the flavor...well...I didn't stop tasting until I had ate half of one.
This particular variety is a hybrid. Although I saved the seeds I'm not sure if I will actually plant them. The seeds from hybrids can pick up the characteristics from either parent and that might not be the good ones. Maybe I'll plant them along the fence line just to see what happens. I did buy some heirloom Charentais Melon seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seed that I will certainly plant in my garden next year. Overall I loved the taste and am drooling thinking about the uncut one. But today is Byron's Birthday party so I'll share it with his and my parents.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
If the fabric you have isn't wide enough for the table, you can make it wider by cutting another piece in half and sewing it onto either side of the main piece of fabric.
If you want to make a ruffle, determine how wide you want the ruffle. Then measure the perimeter of your table. Times that by two or 1 and a half and that is how long the ruffle needs to be. Say you want the ruffle to be 12 inches wide, add one inch for the hem to get 13 inches. Cut as many 13 inch strips of fabric you need to get the length of ruffle you need. Sew the pieces together and then hem the ruffle. Use basting stitches to pull the ruffles into the fabric. I used several separate pieces of thread because the ruffle was so long.
Lay the round cloth on top of a table right side up. Position the ruffle wrong side up on top of the cloth. Adjust until the ruffle is even and fits properly around the perimeter of the cloth and pin on. Then sew along the edges to attach ruffle.
There you go!! You have a cheap beautiful table cloth. In the color and style YOU want!
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Luckily for us, these seeds have all good potential. I promise this is not a seed offering to my statue of the goddess of crop fertility. It's just a jar of seeds on my kitchen window sill by my "stern woman" carving.
Here are hundreds and hundreds of seeds I harvested from only a few of these...
Loofahs! And on the vine there are close to 100 more loofahs. Once the loofahs are dry they make the perfect compostable sponges. You can even eat the fruit while it is still very young. Lord knows how many seeds I am going to get overall. So, I would like to share my abundance with you. If you would like some seeds, please leave a comment. I will mail seeds to up to ten people. If I get more than ten comments I will have a drawing. The give away ends on Friday, and I will have the drawing if necessary on Friday.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
For the past two months I have been struggling with something that is progressively getting worse. It seems to heal and then bam, it's as bad or worse. My hip. Its a burning sharp pain sensation that throbs in my hip and shoots down my leg to my pinkie toe which feels as if its on fire. I went to an orthopedist who explained I have bursitis caused by, probably, hiking. So the cure is rest or a cortisone shot. I declined the shot, and until recently I declined the rest. Now, If I am going to get well, I have to stay off of my feet. I also am examining my diet carefully and seeing if there are any supplements I should be taking. If anyone has any advice for me concerning this I would be appreciative. I am desperate. In the mean time while I lie on the sofa, I am teaching myself to knit.
The finished product from knitting is thinner and softer than crochet. To me it seems stretchier and has a nicer feel than crochet overall. This is the book I am using to learn to knit.
This is the book I bought to learn to crochet. I purchased it when we were evacuated to Maryland during Hurricane Katrina. I taught myself to crochet to occupy my mind and pass time. So what if it was a kids book! For learning, children's' instructional books are great. They tend to have larger drawings and break the steps down in language that is easy to understand. I find some instructional books assume that you understand certain things and you have to do research before you start! For my first crochet project I also used very large yarn and needle, so I could see exactly what was happening and how it worked.
I loved the large visuals.
Very simple step by step.
Monday, August 18, 2008
Collard greens coming up. The more greens the merrier. There's a saying here that for each variety of greens you put in the pot you will make a new friend. Also your greens will be much tastier. I like to put carrot tops, collards, spinach, mustard, turnip, and beet greens in mine. Very healthy and very yummy. Here is the recipe I previously posted. Greens
My four o'clocks do not know when to bloom. They bloom at 7:00 am. My mother's on the other hand are very smart. You can almost set your watch by her beautiful swath of four o'clocks that bloom each day, and the smell while you are sitting on the porch is just heavenly.
Variegated ginger and Mexican petunia or Katie ruella make a wonderful pair.
Here is the coop all covered with it's loofah sponge gourd shade. The loofahs are growing huge and some are already drying out. I will do a post soon about the loofah seeds.
Pollinators love the abundance of large yellow flowers the loofahs bloom. The vine's always filled with flying insects.
Here are my early morning chickens hoping I have some additional treats. "Sorry girls and boys, Daddy gave you your treats earlier! No more til tomorrow." When I was younger, I always said I would "never" call my husband "Daddy" like all those old fashioned southern women.
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Then open it up and discover all the treasures. All in all, there were 30 packages of bread! That's .10 cents a package. Ten cents!!! But before we give it to the chickens....., "This bread isn't out of date! A little smushed, but not old or moldy." So, Now there are 3 loaves of organic whole wheat bread, two packs of whole wheat hamburger buns, one pack of whole wheat hot dog buns and two loaves of white bread in my freezer. I was going to put three loaves of white bread in the freezer, but instead I made "Bon Ton Cafe" bread pudding and rum sauce without the raisins (I hate raisins). This traditional New Orleans dessert was invented to make use of old bread and excess eggs and milk. I still have 21 packs of "chicken bread".
Friday, August 15, 2008
Hmmm...Evidence. Little round balls of poop everywhere. Then....
I found them! Armyworms on my okra! No invasions allowed in this garden, members of the army or not. So I quickly picked them off and squished them!!! That's how I show my appreciation. (Not my picture, I borrowed this one. I was too busy squishing and devastating the invading troops to remember to take a pic.)
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Another view of Byron's compost corral.
Look at all the little compost!!! Give this compost collector a little time, and soon it'll be full of compost gold! I can just imagine the towering corn and waist high collards. Now I have to resist the urge to grab grass clipping filled bags off of the curbs in neighborhoods. Byron gently reminds me, "Kristi, they probably use chemicals." Rats!!! Anyway, I'll keep Dad's horse field clean. You can compost horsey poop, huh?
Here are the things you can compost:
veggie and fruit peelings and parts
tea bag papers
paper (sheet and news, I shred mine and also use it for chicken bedding)
garden clippings and debris
weeds that haven't went to seed
I don't worry about speeding up the process. I just toss it all in, turn it occasionally, it rains here a lot so I skip watering it (it must be kept moist), and wait. For this compost corral design, you shovel the finished compost from underneath the bottom landscape timber. I have a video of this corral being made by someone else on a previous garden post.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
According to my best calculations, the batch of powder cost $1.05 to make (this price does not include the essential lemon oil). Each batch makes enough for 41 loads. So load cost is .03 cents. For comparison here is the load cost of several popular brands:
Cascade tabs- .15 (Sam's club price)
Gain Liquid- .14 (Sam's club price)
Ecover tabs- .25 (Whole Foods price)
Homemade Powder- .03 (Significant Savings)The powder was extremely simple to make, took very little time, and the lemon essential oil makes it smell wonderful. It also does not contain phosphates like most other dishwasher soaps.
Here is the recipe again:
1 cup of Borax (usually can be obtained locally also can buy on internet)
1 cup of sodium bi-carbonate (baking soda easily obtained at grocery store)
1/4 cup of salt
1/4 cup of citric acid (can find at health food stores, cheese supply, soap making supply and other sites on internet-this is also used in making cheeses and bath fizzies)
30 drops of lemon essential oil (I buy mine at Wholefoods)
Mix all ingredients together. Stir well and store in air tight container. Use 1 tblsp per load.
Oh yes, today was the jittery, squealy, skipping, jumping first day of school. Look at all the groovy shoes and book bags.